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THE  EMPEROR  NINTOKU        (see  page  23) 

OKcf^vwinir    fVif>  cinntf  from   tllf»  kltrVieil   fireS. 




(Ancient  and  Modern) 






Yokohama  : 

AN»   AT 

HoNOKONO Shanghai Sinoapore 


Universal  History,  tlie  history  of  what  man  lias 
accomplished  in  this  world,  is  at  bottom  the  history 
of  the  great  men  who  have  worked  here. — Carlyle 



The  object  of  this  book  is  to  present  in  a  concise 
form  some  information  about  the  famous  people  of 
Japan.  This  information  might  be  much  extended  and 
the  number  of  people  dealt  with  might  be  much  in- 
creased ;  but  this  would  defeat  the  object  of  the  book. 
We  have  tried  to  give  what  we  consider  is  most 
needed  by  the  general  reader,  whose  time  is  limited 
and  whose  interest  in  the  subject  is  not  that  of  a 
specialist.  With  this  aim  in  view  we  have  had  to 
consider  as  much  what  to  leave  out  as  what  to  put 
in,  so  as  to  make  the  book  sufficient  for  its  purpose 
without  being  redundant.  The  people  we  have  written 
about  are  known  to  almost  every  Japanese  ;  and  if 
an  educated  man  in  this  country  were  asked  to  make 
a  list  of  a  hundred  representative  famous  and  well- 
known  persons,  probably  ninety  per  cent  of  the  ones 
we  have  chosen  would  be  included  in  the  list.  We 
believe,  therefore,  that  this  comes  near  to  the  heart 
of  things,  and  will  be  welcomed  by  Western  readers 


who  wish  to  know  something  of  the  makers  of  History 
in  Japan ;  but  do  not  wish  to  overburden  their  minds 
with  names  and  details  that  are  not  so  essential. 
The  narratives  are  arranged  as  nearly  as  possible  in 
chronological  order.  Two  or  three  of  these  can  hardly 
be  included  under  the  title  of  this  book  ;  but  they  are 
given  on  account  of  their  close  connection  with  the 
national  life  and  history.  For  purposes  of  compari- 
son, the  proper  names  in  the  headings  are  given  in 
the  original  ideographs  as  well  as  in  their  translitera- 
ted form. 

Anecdotes  have  been  included  for  the  reason  that 
they  sometimes  throw  more  light  on  the  character  of 
the  people  referred  to  than  a  mere  recital  of  dry 
biographical  facts. 

The  historical  summary  that  we  have  given  is  of 
necessity  extremely  brief;  but  it  may  serve  as  a 
thread  loosely  to  bind  together  the  narratives  that 
follow ;  and  to  give  at  least  a  connected  outline  of 
the  history  that  the  persons  dealt  with  helped  to 

We  have  drawn  our  material  mainly  from  Japanese 
sources  ;  but  we  have  also  referred  to  the  standard 
works  in  English  for  the  valuable  and  copious  infor- 
mation which  these  provide. 

The  illustrations  are  most  of  them  reproductions  of 


masterpieces  in  the  possession  of  art  collectors  in 
Japan,  to  whom  we  make  our  grateful  acknowledg- 

We  wish  also  to  express  our  hearty  thanks  to  Mr. 
S.  Toyoshima  for  collecting  some  anecdotes  of  people 
in  the  Meiji  era  ;  and  to  Mr.  E.  J.  Harrison  for  his 
kind  help  with  the  proofs. 

15th  May  1911  (44th  Year  of  Meiji j. 
The  Year  of  the  Boar 



Historical  Summary 
Actors,  Famous    ... 
Adams  William    . . . 

Ama  ShOgun 

Arai  Hakuseki    ... 
Ascetics,  Yogis,  etc. 



Basho,  The  Poet 


■Chikamatsu  ... 


Date  Masamune 
JIn  no  Shokaku 
Endo  Morito 
Enomoto  Buyo 
Fencing,  Masters  of 
Fortune,  Seven  Gods 
Forty-Seven  Eonins 


fukuzawa  yukichi 
Oo-Daigo,  Emperor 
Hachimantaro  Yoshhe 
Han  AW  A  HoKiicHi. . . 



Hanawa  Hokiichi  (Anecdote)  


„  (Anecdote)      

HmosE,  Commander    




Ii  Naosuke 


„        (Anecdote)      


Inoue,  Marquis  (Anecdote)      

IsHiGURO,  Surgeon-General     ...     ... 

Ito,  Prince  (1)     

»        „        (2)     

Japanese  Robinson  Crusoe,  A 

JiMMU,  Emperor 

Jingo,  Empress     

JtJJUTSu,  Founder  op  New  School  of 

Kabayama,  Admiral    

Kaibara  Ekken    

„  „        (Anecdote)    


Kano  Hogai 

Kano  Motonobu 

Kano  School,  Masters  of 

Kano  Motonobu  (Anecdote)    

Kato  Kiyomasa 

Katsu  Kaishu     












Kenrei  Monin       

KiDO  Koin      


Kobo  Daishi 

KoDAMA,  General 
KojiMA  Takanori 


KusuNOKi  Masashige  .. 
KusuNOKi  Masatsura  .. 

„  „         (Anecdote] 

Maejima  Mitsu    (Anecdote)     .. 

Maruyama  Okyo 

Masamune  and  Muramasa 


Minamoto  no  Yoshitomo 
MiURA    (Anecdote) 
Morinaga,  Prince 
MoTooRi  Morinaga 


INakae  To ju 

„  „      (Anecdote) 


Nasu  no  Yoichi    . . . 



I^intoku,  Emperor 


No  AND  Kyogen,  Founders  of 
JS'oGi,  General    



Occult  Arts,  and  Psychic  Investigatoes       212 

Oda  Nobunaga    118 

Okubo  Hikozaemon     12<^> 

0kubo  toshimichi      177 

Okuma,  Count      190 

OiSHi  YosHio       144r 

0-oka  Echizen    1^9 

Oto-Tachibana     19 

Oyama,  Marshal 19^ 

Painters  OF  the  Meiji  Era     215 

Eai  Sanyo     156 

RoNiNs,  The  Forty-Seven 14^ 

Saigd,  Marquis    203 

Saigo  Takamori 175 

Saigo  Takamori    (Anecdote)    176 

Saigyo 76 

Sakanoue  NO  Tamueamaro 43 

Sakura  SoGO 13S 

Sesshu 107 

Shibusawa,  Baron    (Anecdote)       229 

Shizuka        64r 

Shoguns,  The  Last  OF  the       170 

Shotoku  Taishi 24 

SoGA  Vendetta,  The 79 

SoRORi  Shinzaemon     124 

sugawara  no  michizane    44 

Sun  Goddess,  The      11 

SusANo-o  AND  THE  Dragon 12 

Tametomo     52 



Tani,  General     


...     197 

TaTRA  NO  KlYOMOEI        


...      55 

Taira  no  Noritsune    


...       68 



...       31 

Tensho-Daijin      ...     . 


...       11 

Togo,  Admiral     


...     193 



...      58 

TOKUGAWA  IeYASU           


...     125 



...     137 



...     114 

Uesugi  Kenshin 


...     117 

Urashima  Taro    


...      27 

Wake  no  Kiyomaro    


...      40 

Wrestlers,  Famous    


...     219 

Yamada  Nagamasa       

...     134 

Yamaga  Soko       

...     140 

Yamagata,  Prince       

...     189 

Yamatotakeru  no  Mikoto 

...      16 


...     169 


...      63 

Zen  Mystics 

...     211 



The  Emperok  Nintoku 

Observing  the  smoke  from  the  kitchen  fires. 

The  Emperor  Jimmu  and  the  Golden  Kite    ...     . 
Yamatodakeru  and  the  Chief  of  the  Kumaso 
The  Empress  Jingo  with  Takenouchi  and  Her  Son 

Shotoku  Taishi     

Urashima  Taro      

The  Emperor  Tenchi  Receiving  the  Shoe       ...     . 

En  NO  Shokaku  Walking  ON  THE  Waves 

Wake  no  Kiyomaro  Consulting  the  Oracle    .... 
SuGAWARA  NO  MicHizANE  IN  Exile       ...     

Gazing  at  the  Emperor's  gift. 


Writing  her  famous  book  in  the  temple. 

Statue  of  Daruma        

Carved  by  Yamazaki  Choun. 


About  to  descend  the  hill  to  attack  the  Taira  army. 


Dancing  before  the  Shogun  at  Hachiman  in  Kamakura. 

Nasu  NO  ToicHi  Shooting  at  the  Fan       

Endo  MoRiTo's  Fatal  Deed 

NicHiREN,  the  Famous  Priest     

Preaching  by  the  wayside  in  Kamakura. 

The  Emperor  Go-Daigo       


Prince  Morinaga  in  the  Cave,  and  the  Assassin    . 



...  13 

...  17 

...  21 

...  25 

...  29 

...  33 

...  37 

...  41 

...  45 

...  49 

...  53 

...  61 

...  65 

...  69 

...  73 

...  77 

...  81 

...  85 


KusuNoKi  Masashige     89 

Taking  leave  of  his  son  just  before  being  killed  in  battle. 


(at  Inamuragasaki,  near  Kamakura) 

KusuNOKi  Masatsura  Restrained  by  His  Mother        ...    97 

KojiMA  Takanori  Writing  on  the  Tree    101 

Landscape  by  Sesshu,  the  Famous  Painter     105 

Sword-Smiths  at  Work       109 

Uesugi  Kenshin  Breaking  into  the  Enemy's  Camp     ...  115 
EIato  KiYOMASA  IN  Korea    121 

Looking  towards  the  mountains  of  home  beyond  the  sea. 

Temple  AT  NiKKo 127 

Dedicated  to  Tokugawa  leyasu. 


Having  audience  of  the  Emperor. 

Landscape  BY  Gyokusho      141 

A  view  of  Arashiyama  and  cherry  blossoms,  near  Kyoto. 

The  Soga  Vendetta     145 

Hanawa  HoKHCHi,  THE  Blind  Scholar      151 

Continuing  his  exposition,  unaware  that  the  light  has  gone  out. 

The  Girl's  Festival     157 

Painted  by  Miss  Shoin  Sakakibara. 

A  Shinto  Priest    161 

Painted  by  the  famous  Hokusai. 

The  Carp        _ 165 

Famous  picture  by  Okyo. 

The  Seven  Gods  OF  Fortune      173 

Prince  ItO      179 

Prince  Yamagata 187 

•Admiral  Togo 191 

General  Nogi       195 

General  KoDAMA 201 

Commander  Hirose        205 


Imps  Tempting  A  Mystic      209' 


Kano  Hogai's  Masterpiece. 

HiTACHiYAMA,  THE  Champion       217 

Playing  THE  ^oro      221 

DANJtJEo,  THE  Famous  Actor      225 

Playing  the  part  of  Benkei. 



The  earliest  history  of  Japan,  called  the  Kojiki 
(Record  of  Ancient  Matters),  was  written  in  A.D.  712  ; 
and  from  this  source  the  Shinto  mythology  and  early 
traditions  are  mainly  drawn.  According  to  these, 
before  the  first  human  Emperor  there  were  many 
generations  of  gods,  and  from  these  divine  ancestors 
Jimmu  Tenno  is  believed  to  have  descended.  The- 
date  of  his  birth  is  given  as  711  B.C  ;  and  his  en- 
thronement as  660  B.C.,  which  date  is  fixed  officially 
as  the  beginning  of  the  present  Imperial  line. 

From  tliis  time  until  the  reign  of  the  Empress  Jingo 
in  the  third  century,  little  is  known.  During  the 
reign  of  this  Empress,  the  principal  event  recorded  is 
the  invasion  of  Korea,  planned  and  carried  out  by  the 
Empress,  who  crossed  to  the  Peninsula  with  her  fleet 
and  conquered  three  Korean  principalities.  On  her 
return  to  Japan,  she  gave  birth  to  her  son,  the  Em- 
peror Ojin,  afterwards  apotheosized  as  Hachiman,  the- 
god  of  war,  whose  shrines  may  still  be  found  through- 
out Japan. 

The  next  epoch-making  event  was  the  introduction 
of  Buddhism  in  the  sixth  century,  from  China  througL 
Korea,  which  heralded  an  ethical  awakening,  and 
proved  of  inestimable  benefit  to  the  civilization  of 
Japan.  Chinese  learning,  science  and  arts  were 
adopted,  and   great  advance  in  culture   and   political 


-administration  was  made.  During  the  seventh  century 
iihe  government  was  centralized,  and  further  improved 
in  many  ways. 

During  most  of  the  eighth  century  the  capital 
was  at  Nara.  This  is  called  the  Nara  era,  and  the 
two  oldest  histories,  tlie  Kojikl  and  the  Nihongi  (lit. 
"Chronicles  of  Japan"),  were  compiled  at  this  time. 
In  794  the  Emperor  Kwammu  moved  his  court  to 
Kyoto  which  thereafter  continued  (until  1869)  to  be 
the  place  of  Imperial  residence.  But  at  this  time, 
and  continuing  for  about  five  hundred  years,  the  de 
facto  rulers  of  Japan  were  members  of  the  great 
Fujiwara  family,  whose  daughters  were  married  to 
Emperors,  and  whose  sons  held  the  principal  offices 
of  State.  At  last,  however,  in  the  eleventh  and  twelfth 
-centuries,  the  powerful  Taira  and  Minamoto  clans  rose 
to  dispute  this  supremacy,  and  subsequently  wrested 
the  reins  of  power  from  each  other  by  turns.  Fight- 
ing between  these  great  rivals  went  on  continually, 
— until  in  1185  the  Taira  family  was  completely 
overthrown,  and  Minamoto  Yoritomo  became  Shogun. 
This  was  the  most  dramatic  period  of  Japanese  history, 
■and  the  stirring  events  of  this  time  are  recorded  in 
many  epic  narratives  well  known  to  every  Japanese. 

Yoritomo  established  his  government  at  Kamakura, 
•and  thus  another  epoch-making  era — known  as  the 
Kamakura  era  (1192-1333) — was  ushered  in.  He 
•divided  the  provincial  government  among  his  allies 
with  the  intention  of  keeping  the  real  control  in  his 
own  hands.  But  before  he  could  fully  accomplish  this 
Ihe  died  (in  1199) ;  and  as  his  sons  were  weaklings, 


the  nemesis  of  usurpation  soon  overtook  his  house  ; 
for  the  actual  authority  passed  into  the  hands  of  the^ 
Ho  jo  family,  who  acted  as  *'Eegents"  for  about  a 
hundred  years.  One  of  the  principal  events  of  the 
Hojo  period  was  the  attempted  Mongol  invasion  which 
was  repulsed  by  Hojo  Tokimune,  aided  by  a  violent 
storm  which  destroyed  the  enemy's  fleet.  The  Hoja 
family  was  finally  overthrown  in  1333  by  the  Emperor- 
Go-Daigo  and  his  faithful  followers. 

The  Ashikaga  family  was  the  next  to  obtain  ad- 
ministrative control;  and  the  period  from  1336  until 
1573  is  known  as  the  Ashikaga  age.  During  part 
of  this  era  considerable  progress  was  made  in  all  the 
arts  ;  but  from  1467  until  about  the  middle  of  the 
following  century,  Japan  was  torn  by  internecine 
strife,  and  the  people  suifered  great  hardship.  At 
last  the  Ashikaga  family  weakened  ;  and  towards  the- 
close  of  the  sixteenth  century  their  downfall  came. 
The  decline  of  the  Ashikaga  control  released  the  local 
Daimyos  from  restraint ;  and  as  the  country  lost 
cohesion,  they  began  furiously  to  struggle  among 
themselves.  Thus  the  country  was  fast  drifting  into 
a  condition  of  utter  anarchy.  Fortunately,  however, 
this  state  of  things  did  not  last  long ;  for  towards  the 
end  of  the  sixteenth  century,  three  great  men  appeared 
simultaneously,  who  arrested  this  disintegration  and 
centralized  the  power  of  government  once  more. 

These  three  were  Oda  Nobunaga,  Taiko  Hideyoshi, 
and  Tokugawa  leyasu,  and  all  three  were  born  in  the 
same  decade.  The  work  of  centralization  commenced 
by    Nobunaga    was    completed    by    Hideyoshi,    who 


brought  the  whole  of  Japan  under  his  sway.  And 
thus  the  way  was  prepared  for  leyasu,  the  great 
organizer  and  administrator,  who  founded  the  Toku- 
gawa  Shogunate,  which  lasted  for  about  two  hundred 
and  fifty  years  (until  1865).  Tokugawa  leyasu  estab- 
lished his  capital  at  Yedo  in  1590  and  obtained  the 
title  of  Shogun  in  1603.  Among  the  many  means 
by  which  he  secured  the  supremacy  of  his  house, 
not  the  least  effective  was  the  mandate  which  com- 
pelled the  Daimyos  to  reside  in  Yedo  every  alternate 
year,  and  to  leave  their  wives  and  families  there  as 
hostages  all  the  time.  During  the  peaceful  Tokugawa 
era,  the  national  culture  made  great  advance, 
and  many  famous  men  of  letters  and  masters 
of  the  various  arts  appeared.  In  time,  however,  as 
the  Yedo  court  came  to  degenerate  through  luxury 
and  effeminacy,  the  great  Southern  and  Western 
-clans  began  to  assert  their  strength,  and  a  tide  of 
general  discontent  set  in.  The  pressure  from  Western 
Powers,  with  the  arrival  of  Commodore  Perry  and  his 
"'  Black  Ships,"  and  the  attitude  of  the  Shogunate 
at  this  time,  gave  the  final  impetus  to  a  general 
uprising  of  these  powerful  clans.  And  at  last  the 
supremacy  of  the  Shogunate  ceased  ;  and  Keiki,  the 
last  of  the  Shoguns,  resigned  his  power  into  the 
hands  of  the  Emperor. 

Thus  the  feudal  period  ended,  the  reigning  Emperor 
assumed  full  control,  and  (in  1868)  the  present  Meiji 
(lit.  "enlightened  government")  era  began.  In  1869 
the  name  of  Yedo  was  changed  to  Tokyo  (lit.  Eastern 
Capital)    and   this   became   the    seat  of  the  Imperial 


residence.  From  this  time  onwards  there  followed  in 
rapid  succession  all  kinds  of  radical  changes  and 
wholesale  reforms.  But  the  principal  events  of  the 
present  era  need  not  be  here  recorded,  as  fchey  are 
sufficiently  well  known. 

"^^t^^^^^l^rfS^xr . 


The  sacred  mytli  of  Tenslio- 
daijin,  or  Amaterasn  (lit.  "  Heaven 
Shiner  "),  should  be  mentioned  here, 
as  it  is  closely  connected  with  national 
matters  such  as  the  ancestry  ascribed  to 
the  Emperor  Jimmu,  the  origin  of  the  mirror 
and  the  jewel  which  form  two  of  the  three 
Sacred  Treasures  of  Japan,  the  rites  of  Shinto,  the 
origin  of  music  and  the  dance  (Kagura),  with  many 
ramifications  in  the  social  life.  The  sln-ines  at  Yamada 
in  Ise  Province — and  especially  the  inner  sanctuary 
dedicated  to  the  Sun  Goddess — are  the  most  ancient  and 
honoured  of  the  many  shrines  throughout  the  land.  And  it  is 
here  that  matters  of  national  moment  are  reverently  reported 
by  the  Emperor  in  person,  or  by  deputy.  It  was  for  this 
purpose  that  Admiral  Togo  proceeded  to  Ise  Bay  with  his  whole 
fleet  at  the  close  of  the  great  war. 

According  to  the  ancient  Japanese  mythology,  in  the  begin- 
ning there  were  three  deities  who  came  into  existence  without 
creation  and  afterwards  disappeared.  After  a  certain  number 
of  divine  generations,  there  appeared  in  Takama-no-hara  (lit. 
"Plain  of  High  Heaven")  the  two  named  Izanami  and 
Izanagi,  believed  t )  be  connected  with  the  formation  of  Japan, 
and  subsequently  myriads  of  minor  gods.  According  to  the 
legend,  it  was  from  the  left  eye  of  Izanagi  that  the  Svm 
Goddess,  the  ruler  of  heaven,  was  born.  And  from  the  right 
eye  came  her  impetuous  brother  Susano-o,  the  ruler  of  the 
earth.  The  story  of  how  her  brother's  violence  caused  her  to 
hide  in  a  cave,  and  the  means  by  which  she  was  at  last  induced 
to  emerge  and  lighten  the  world ;  and  how  her  unruly  brother 
was  subdued  and  banished  to  Izumo,  with  the  details  of  his 
subsequent  career — forms  the  oldest  national  legend  of  Japan. 


It  is  remarkable  that  a  sacred  narrative  closely  resembling 
the  English  national  story  of  St.  George  and  the  33ragon  also 
forms  one  of  the  ancient  national  legends  of  Japan.  Susano-o 
no  Mikoto,  brother  of  the  Sun  Goddess,  being  expelled  from 
heaven  by  his  father,  set  out  on  a  long  earthly  pilgrimage. 
One  day  when  he  came  to  the  river  Hi  in  Izumo,  he  found  an 
old  man  and  woman  with  their  daughter,  in  deep  distress. 
When  he  asked  the  cause  of  their  weeping,  the  old  man  told 
him  that  they  had  lost  seven  daughters  already,  and  were 
about  to  lose  the  last  remaining  one.  Every  year  an  eight- 
headed  dragon  had  devoured  one  of  their  children ;  and  they 
knew  of  no  way  to  save  the  last  beloved  daughter.  Then 
Susano-o  swore  that  he  would  rescue  her. 

He  had  eight  tubs  of  wine  prepared — one  for  each  head — 
and  then  laid  in  wait  for  the  dragon's  appearance.  At  last  the 
creature  came,  and  finding  the  wine  placed  for  him,  drank 
deeply  until  at  last  he  became  intoxicated  and  slept.  Then 
Susano-o  fell  upon  him  with  his  sword  and  slew  him — cutting 
his  body  into  pieces.  And  in  the  tail  of  the  great  serpent  he 
fomid  a  sword  which  he  drew 
forth.  Thus  having  conquer- 
ed the  animal  monster  and 
possessed  himself  of  the  sword 
of  power,  he  became  united 
with  the  virgin,  and  they 
dwelt  happily  together,  with 
the  old  man  as  master  of 
their  house.  This  sword  is 
regarded  as  one  of  the  Sacred 
Treasures  of  Japan. 


niE  EMPEROR  JLMMU  AND  THE  GOLDEN  KITE    (see  page  15). 




Jimmu,  tlie  first  Emperor  of  Japan,  according  to  Japanese         SC 
liistorians,  was  of  the  fifth  generation  from  Tensho-daijin,  the 
Sun  Grxidess ;  and  became  ruler  of  Jaj)an  in  660  B.  C,  from         ^ 
which  time  dates  the  beginning  of  the  Japanese  Empire. 

The  Imperial  Family  had  been  living  for  several  generations  ^ 
in  the  island  of  Kyushu,  and  it  was  from  here  that  Jimmu  and 
his  elder  brother  Itsuse  started  for  the  main  island  on  their 
expedition  of  conquest.  But  as  a  tribe,  with  their  women  and 
•children,  journeyed  with  them,  their  progress  was  slow;  and 
many  delays  and  difficulties  were  met  with.  At  last,  after 
about  seven  years,  they  reached  Naniwa  (now  Osaka)  where 
their  conflicts  with  the  natives  commenced. 

In  the  first  battle.  Prince  Itsuse  was  killed  by  an  arrow  shot 
by  a  chief  named  Nagasune  ("Long  Shanks"),  who  raised  an 
army  to  oppose  the  invaders.  But  Jimmu  and  his  warrioi-s 
finally  conquered  and  journeyed  on ;  and  many  curious  legends 
tell  of  the  heavenly  aid  and  miraculous  events  that  attended 
their  triumphant  progress.  One  of  these  legends  tells  of  a 
golden  kite  emitting  brilliant  rays  that  alighted  on  the  bow 
of  Jimmu,  and  greatty  disconcerted  the  enemy.  This  is  the 
origin  of  the  famous  Order  of  the  Golden  Kite,*  which  high 
decoration  is  given  to  soldiers  and  sailors  for  distinguished 

After  bringing  the  country  into  subjection,  Jimmu  Tenno — 
th(3n  about  sixty-two  years  old — established  his  seat  of  govern- 
ment at  Kashiwara  in  Yamato  Province,  where  for  seventy-five 
years  he  continued  to  rule  the  country,  and  to  strengthen  the 
foundation  of  the  empire.  According  to  the  KojiU  ("  Kecord 
of  Ancient  Matters  "),  he  died  at  the  age  of  one  hundred  and 

*  See  fiicsimile  on  front  cover. 



Prince  Yamatotakeru,  son  of  the  Emperor  Keiko,  is  said 
to  have  lived  about  eighteen  hundred  years  ago.  He  was 
noted  for  his  bravery  and  ability  as  a  military  leader;  and 
some  well-known  epical  narratives  are  told  of  his  national 
exploits.  He  was  very  large  in  stature :  in  fact,  tradition  says 
that  he  was  about  ten  feet  high. 

In  those  days  there  wore  two  powerful  tribes  in  Japan 
which  had  not  been  entirely  subdued  by  the  Japanese.  One 
was  called  the  Kumaso  which  occupied  the  greater  part  of 
Kyushu;  while  the  other  tribe,  called  the  Ezo,  lived  in  the 
northern  part  of  the  coimtry.  The  direct  descendants  of 
this  tribe  are  the  present  Ainos  of  Hokkaido,  about  twenty 
thousand  of  whom  still  survive.  These  two  tribes  for  many 
centuries  gave  no  small  amomit  of  trouble  to  the  rulers  of 
the  country. 

When  Prince  Yamatotakeru  at  the  head  of  an  army  went 

to  subjugate  the  Kumaso,  he  was  a  mere  boy ;  but  by  means 

of  a  certain  stratagem  he  succeeded  in  over- 

^^)V^-;j^^.j^^J     coming   the    enemy   by   personally   slaying 

their   chief;    and   thus   avoided   the   heavj 

slaughter  of  a  general  appeal  to  arms. 

He  also  did  great  service  in  subjugating 
i\\Q  Ezo  tribe;  and  went  through  all  kinds 
of  hardship.  On  his  way  back  to  the  capital 
from  the  expedition,  he  caught  a  kind  of 
fever,  and  died  at  Nobono  in  the  province 
of  Ise,  whenihe  was  only  thirty  years  old. 






Princess    Oto-Tacliibana,   the   wife    of    Yamatotakeru,   lias 
always  been  honoured  as  a  model  of  wifely  devotion  and  self- 
sacrifice.       She    accompanied    her 
husband  on  his  expedition  against 
the   Ezo   barbarians,    and    bravely  ^^^^^^^^^^^ 

shared   his   hardships    and    perils.  ^^V^^T"^^ — 

One  da;N'  when  they  were  crossing 
the  Bay  of  Yedo  to  Kazusa  in  a 
l)oat,  a  violent  storm  arose,  and  as 
the  boat  was  rather  heavily  laden,  it  was  in  danger  of  being 
overwhelmed.  Seeing  this,  the  princess  feared  that  something 
had  made  the  sea  god  angry,  and  decided  to  sacrifice  herself 
to  appease  his  wrath.  She  urged  her  husband  to  let  nothing 
liinder  the  fulfilment  of  the  task  entrusted  to  him.  And  then, 
throwing  out  the  thick  mats  to  lighten  the  boat,  she  seated  her- 
self on  them  and  drifted  away.  Instantly  the  sea  became  calm, 
and  the  prince  continued  his  voyage  in  safety.  The  princess 
was  never  seen  again ;  but  her  comb  was  washed  ashore,  and 
the  people  built  a  shrine  in  which  it  W' as  preserved. 

On  the  wa}'  back  from  his  successful  expedition,  Yamato- 
takeru returned  by  way  of  the  Usui  pass  opposite  to  Mount 
Fuji.  And  as  he  gazed  over  the  sea  where  his  devoted  wife 
had  sacrificed  herself  for  him,  he  cried  in  his  sorrow,  "  Azuma 
wa  ya!"  (Oh!  my  wife!).  And  thus,  it  is  said,  the  country 
north  of  this  pass  came  to  be  known  as  Azuma. 

Last  year,  (1910),  a  stone  monument  was  erected  at  Hashiri- 
mizu  to  mark  the  place  where  the  boat  started,  and  to  honour 
the  memory  of  the  gentle  princess.  The  picture  of  her  seated 
on  the  drifting  mats  is  a  favourite  one  in  Japanese  art. 




The  Empress  Jingo,  wife  of  the  Emperor  Chiiai,  lived  alx)ut 
seventeen  hundred  years  ago.  From  childhood  she  was  noted 
for  her  wisdom  and  noble  character,  and  also  for  her  beauty. 

In  those  days  Korea  was  divided  into  three  independent 
states,  which  were  always  quarreling  with  one  another.  The 
ruler  of  one  of  the  three  states  asked  the  Emperor  Chuai 
for  assistance;  but  the  Emperor  died  while  on  the  point  of 
embarking  for  Korea  with  a  large  army.  Thereupon  the 
Empress  Jingo  decided  to  take  his  place,  and  set  out  at  the 
head  of  her  warriors.  After  fighting  many  battles,  she  suc- 
ceeded in  subduing  the  southern  half  of  Korea,  and  this  became 
a  dependency  of  Japan. 

Shortly  after  her  return  to  Japan,  a  son  of  the  late  Emperor 
was  born  to  her;  and  he  afterwards  became  the  famous 
Emperor  Ojin. 

The  Empress  Jingo  had  an  excellent  adviser  named  Takeno- 
uchi,  who  is  said  to  have 
lived  for  three  hundred  and 
eight  years.  His  picture 
may  be  seen  on  the  present 
bank-notes  in  Japan.  In 
Japanese  art  one  may  often 
find  the  picture  of  a  beauti- 
ful woman-warrior  accom- 
panied by  a  venerable 
white-haired  man  holding 
a  baby  in  his  arms.  These 
are  the  same  three. 

The  Korean  dependency  continued  for  many  hundreds  of 
years ;  but  was  at  last  given  up  in  the  reign  of  the  Emperor 




The  Emperor  Ojin,  son  of  the  Empress  Jingo,  had  two  sons. 
The  yomiger  one  named  Wakairatsnko  was  the  favourite  of 
the  old  Emperor  and  was  appointed  heir  to  the  throne ;  but 
when  the  Emperor  died,  Wakairatsnko  insisted  that  his  elder 
brother  Osasagi  should  be  the  successor.  The  elder  brother, 
however,  maintained  that  this  was  against  the  will  of  their 
father ;  and  thus,  for  three  years,  each  continued  to  iu*ge  the 
crown  upon  the  other,  until  at  last  Wakairatsnko  kiUed  him- 
self, in  order  that  his  brother  might  succeed  to  the  throne. 
Osasagi  then  became  Emperor,  and  reigned  during  the  greater 
part  of  the  fourth  century. 

He  is  known  as  the  Emperor  Nintoku,  and  was  in  every 
way  an  exemplary  ruler.  The  people  at  that  time  were  living 
in  great  poverty,  and  their  benevolent  Sovereign  was  moved 
witli  pity  for  them  when  he  saw  from  his  tower  how  seldom 
the  smoke  rose  from  their  kitchen  fires.  He  remitted  all  taxes 
for  three^  years  and  did  what  he  could  to  relieve  his  poorer 
subjects,  denying  himself  all  luxuries  and  living  very  simply. 
But  after  three  years  of  this  he  had  the  satisfaction  of  seeing 
the  smoke  rise  from  many  cheerful  cottage  fires. 

"Now  we  are  indeed  rich,"  he  said  to  the  Empress. 

"  We  cannot  even  repair  the  roof  of  our  house,  we  are  so 
poor,"  she  replied. 

"No,"  said  the  Emperor,  "our 
riches  consist  in  the  comfort  and 
happiness  of  our  beloved  subjects." 

During  his  long  reign,  the  Em- 
peror Nintoku  carried  out  all  kinds 
of  practical  public  works  for  the 
benefit  of  the  people,  and  was  a 
benefactor  to  all. 



It  was  during  the  reign  of  the  Emperor  Kimmei  (in  A.D. 
552)  1  that  Buddhism  first  came  to  Japan.  It  came  tln-ongh 
Korea ;  and  gradually  gaining  influence,  at 
first  in  the  Imperial  Court  and  among  the 
upper  classes,  at  last — towards  the  end  of 
the  sixth  century — in  spite  of  some  obsta- 
cles, the  new  religion  triumphed. 

Now  the  first  great  name  closely  con- 
nected with  the  development  of  Buddhism 
in  Japan  was  that  of  Shotoku  Taishi  (A.D. 
571-621),  nephew  and  heir  of  the  Empress 
Suiko.  It  is  said  of  this  truly  remarkable  man  that  he  was 
able  to  speak  as  soon  as  he  was  born ;  and  that  he  possessed 
an  extraordinary  faculty  of  attending  to  several  things  at  the 
same  time.  In  fact,  it  is  said  that  he  could  hear  the  appeals 
of  ten  people  at  once,  and  give  to  each  a  proper  answer.  He 
was  regarded  as  the  avatar  of  a  great  Indian  teacher. 

The  prince  used  the  wiiole  influence  of  the  government  in 
favour  of  Buddhism,  and  built  many  temples.  One  of  these — 
the  famous  temple  called  Horyuji  at  Nara — still  stands,  and 
is  considered  the  best  example  of  the  art  and  architecture  of 
that  day.  He  also  wrote  some  valuable  commentaries  on  the 
sacred  books  of  Buddhism,  and  rendered  great  service  to  the 
propaganda  in  many  other  w^ays. 

He  was  also  a  most  enlightened  statesman,  and  it  was  owing 
to  his  adaptation  of  Chinese  methods  of  government — known 
as  the  "Laws  of  Shotoku-Taishi  " — tliat  the  Japanese  govern- 
ment began  to  assume  a  well-organized  form.  Though  he 
never  ascended  the  throne,  he  was  principal  adviser  to  the 
government  for  about  thirty  years.  He  died  at  the  age  of 







All  Japanese  children  know  about  Urasliinia  Taro-tlie  Kip         ^ 
Van  Winkle  of  Japan.     About  fourteen  hundred  and  thirty 
years  ago — so  the  story  goes — when  fishing  in   his  boat   one         ^jw 
summer  day,  he  caught  a  tortoise 
on   his   line.        But   the   fisher-boy 
knew  that  the  tortoise  was  sacred 
to  the  Dragon  God  of  the  Sea,  so  he 
murmured  a  prayer  and  gently  set 
it  free. 

8fX3n  after  this  a  beautiful  maiden 
rose  out  of  the  sea  and  entered  the 

l)oat.  "I  am  the  daughter  of  the  Dragon  King,"  she  said. 
"And  I  have  come  to  thank  you  for  your  kindness  to  the 
tortoise ;  and  also  to  invite  you  to  my  father's  home." 

So  together  they  went  to  the  wonderland  ;  and  Taro  became 
the  son-in-law  of  the  Dragon  King.  For  three  years  he  lived 
there  in  perfect  happiness ;  but  at  last  the  desire  to  see  his 
parents  again  became  very  strong,  so  he  asked  his  bride  to 
let  him  go  back  for  a  short  time.  Keluctantly  she  at  last 
agreed  to  this ;  and  when  he  left,  she  gave  him  a  box  which 
she  made  him  promise  never  to  open.  For  if  he  opened  it,  he 
never  could  return  to  her  again. 

So  he  went  away ;  but  when  he  reached  his  native  village,  he 
found  that  all  was  changed.  Not  even  a  trace  of  his  old  home 
remained.  And  no  wonder !  —  for  since  he  left  home  on  that 
summer  day,  four  hundred  years  had  come  and  gone.  Full  of 
sadness,  he  wandered  back  to  the  beach ;  and  at  last  in  despair 
he  opened  the  box !  Instantly  a  strange  white  vapour  escaped 
iind  drifted  awa}*.  x^iid  with  it  went  also  Taro's  youth  and 
strength :  for  in  that  moment  he  became  an  old,  old  man ;  and 
sank  down  lifeless  on  the  sand  beside  the  sea. 



Daruma  was  not  a  Japanese,  but  liis  name  is  a  liousehold 
word  in  Japan ;  and  his  picture  is  probably  the  most  com- 
monly drawn.  Even  as  a  toy  his  odd  limbless  figure  is 
familiar  to  every  child  in  the  land. 

His  real  name  was  Bodhidarma,  contracted  to  Dharma,  and 
he  is  said  to  have  been  the  son  of  an  Indian  king.  In  the 
sixth  century  he  went  to  China  and  became  a  teacher  of 
Dhydna,  a  system  of  mystic  meditation,  to  the  Chinese  Em- 
peror Bu.  In  China  Daruma  found  many  earnest  disciples 
who  studied  his  system  and  gave  it  the  name  of  Zen-na  which 
was  afterwards  introduced  into  Japan  by  priests  who  went  to 
China  for  study.  In  Japan  at  present  Zen-na,  commonly 
known  as  Zen,  though  much  degenerated,  is  probably  the  best 
form  of  Buddhism  remaining. 

Daruma  is  usually 
depicted  as  a  rather 
grotesque  figure  w^ith- 
out  legs,  as  he  is  sup- 
posed to  have  lost  them 
when  sitting  in  motion- 
less contemplaticm  for  a 
period  of  no  less  than 
nine  years.  Another 
r**^— ^-  story  has  it  that  one 
night  in  the  midst  of 
his  meditation  he  was 
overpowered  with  sleep, 
and  when  he  awoke  he  cut  off  his  eyelids  and  threw^  them  on 
the  ground.  Thereupon,  says  the  legend,  they  turned  directl^^ 
into  tiny  tea-plants,  taking  root  in  the  soil. 






~  ~  *^^^3B!I^I^^^^^  ~'~^^^flli^^^B 





URASHIMA  TARO        (see  page  27). 




The  Emperor  Tenchi,  who  reigued  from  A.D.  662  to  671,  was 
one  of  the  most  enlightened  administrators  that  Japan  has 
had.  As  a  yoimg  man  he  took  a  leading  part  in  the  overthrow 
of  the  powerful  Soga  clan.  This  old  clan 
had  become  so  influential  at  court  that  its 
leader,  named  Iruka,  began  to  harbour 
secret  designs  on  the  throne  itself;  and 
Tenchi,  then  Prince  Naka  no  Oe,  was  one 
of  the  first  to  become  aware  of  this.  So 
taking  counsel  with  Nakatomi  no  Kamatari, 
and  with  the  aid  of  other  loyalists,  he  put 
an  effective  stop  to  these  ambitious  designs. 

Prior  to  the  suppression  of  the  Soga  clan,  there  had  been 
no  strong  central  government  in  Japan;  the  Imperial  House 
was  simply  the  strongest  clan.  Thus  the  Emperor  had  no 
direct  control  over  the  country  as  a  whole.  It  was  in  the 
reform  of  this  unsatisfactory  state  of  things,  and  in  the  central- 
ization of  the  government,  that  Tenchi  rendered  such  great 
service.  At  this  time  he  was  heir  apparent  to  his  uncle,  the 
Emperor  Kotoku,  in  whose  reign  this  great  reform — known 
as  the  Taikwa  reform — culminated,  and  the  Taikwa  era  (the 
first  of  the  iiengb,  or  era  names)  began.  But  the  prince  was  the 
real  power  behind  the  throne.  In  importance,  this  reformation 
may  be  compared  to  that  of  the  Meiji  era  in  1868,  as  it 
practically  laid  the  foundation  of  the  Imperial  rule  in  Japan. 
The  Emperor  Tenchi  died  in  67 J,  at  the  age  of  forty-six. 




Kamatari,  the  founder  of  the  famous  Fujiwara  family,  so 
closely  connected  with  the  Imperial  House  in  Japan,  was  the 
right  hand  of  the  Emperor  Tenchi,  and  took  an  active  part  in 
the  great  reforms  during  the  reigns  of  Kotoku,  Saimyo,  and 
Tenchi.  He  was  undoubtedly  one  of  Japan's  greatest  states- 

His  connection  with  the  Emperor  Tenchi  began  when  they 
were  both  young  men.  Kamatari  saw  the  danger  of  the  clan 
systems ;  and  for  some  years  had  been  planning  the  introduction 
of  fundamental  reforms  in  the  method  of  government.  He  also 
saw  the  necessity  of  finding  some  prince  of  the  Imperial  line  to 
co-operate  with  him ;  and  after  testing  several,  his  choice 
finally  fell  on  the  young  prince  who  afterwards  became  Tenchi- 
tenno.  He  found  an  opening  for  intimate  relations  in  a 
cm'ious  way.  One  day  when  playing  football,  the  prince 
accidentally  kicked  off  his  shoe,  and  Kamatari,  who  happened 
to  be  one  of  the  party,  at  once  picked  it  up  and  kneeling, 
respectfully  offered  it  to  the  prince,  who  in  his  turn  also  knelt 
and  respectfully  received  it.  These  two  afterwards  became 
very  closely  connected  in  the  affairs  of  State ;    and   the   wise 

advice  of  Kamatari  was  sought  on 
all  important  occasions.  Shortly 
before  his  death  in  1)69,  the  Em- 
X3eror  Tenchi  conferred  on  him  the 
rank  of  " Great  Minister  "  (0-omi), 
and  granted  him  the  family  name 
of  Fujiwara.  And  for  about  five 
hundred  years— until  the  12tli  century — the  descendants  of  this 
great  famil}^  were  the  de  facto  rulers  of  Japan. 

-o^^-^<D'0%%^'^-0^-  ^-o^ 


Si   ilMi^^i 




En  no  Sliukakii,  or  En  no  Gyoja  (En  the  Yogi),  tlie  magician 
wlio  founded  the  Shugen  (flj.^)  School,  or  YamahusMs,  was 
born  in  the  province  of  Yamato  in  A.D.  634;  and  from  his 
early  years  was  remarkable  for 
singular  ability.  He  had  always  a 
strong  bent  towards  mysticism ;  and 
at  the  age  of  thirty-two,  he  left  his 
home  and  went  to  the  summit  of 
Mount  Katsuragi,  where  he  lodged 
for  thirty  years  in  a  cave.  He  is 
said  to  have  gained  magical  powers,  and  to  have  employed 
elemental  spirits  to  do  his  will. 

His  supposed  sorcery  at  last  came  to  be  greatly  feared? 
and  the  matter  being  reported  to  the  Emperor  Mommu,  he 
was  arrested  and  confined  in  an  enclosed  place,  bound  with 
chains.  His  captors  thought  they  had  thus  effectively  secured 
him ;  but  to  the  amazement  of  everybody,  Shokaku  suddenly 
sprang  up,  and  breaking  his  chains  as  if  they  were  cobwebs, 
levitated  his  body  high  up  in  the  air  and  escaped.  Then  the 
authorities,  finding  it  impossible  to  capture  him,  seized  his 
aged  mother  instead  and  held  l:er  as  a  hostage,  until  at  last, 
Shokaku— to  save  his  mother — peacefully  gave  himself  up.  He 
was  banished  to  an  island  in  Izu  Province  where  he  remained 
for  some  years.  And  although  he  was  afterwards  released,  he 
became  dissatisfied  with  Japan,  and  decided  to  utilize  his 
occult  powers  in  leaving  the  country.  He  put  his  mother  in  a 
bowl-shaped  tub,  and  carrying  her  on  one  hand,  crossed  over 
to  China  by  walking  on  the  waves. 

A  few  centuries  after  the  disappearance  of  Shokaku,  the 
teachings  of  this  school  were  revived  by  priests — notabl}" 
Seiho  and  Zoyo — of  the  Shingon  and  Tendai  Buddhist  sects, 
in  whose  esoteric  orders  certain  of  this  occult  knowledge  was 
believed  to  be  preserved. 



The  liigliest  grade  of  ascetics  that  Japanese  and  Chinese 
tradition  tells  of  were  the  Sennin  ({[IjA)-  These  ideographs 
being  composed  of  \  or  ^  (man)  and  \1\  (moimtain)  mean 
literally  "mountain  men."  Tliej  are  said  to  have  dwelt  on 
high  momitains,  and  to  have  possessed  great  wisdom  and 
knowledge  of  nature's  secrets.  It  is  said  that  in  times  of 
national  emergency,  the  ancient  Emperors  of  China  would 
consult  these  Magi.  Later,  however,  the  word  sennin  came 
to  mean  any  kind  of  wonder-worker  or  yogi  (called  gydja  in 
Japan) ;  and  at  present  ordinary  conjurers  sometimes  apply  to 
themselves  this  term.  Asceticism  has  been  practised  in  Japan 
from  ancient  times,  and  not  a  few  traces  of  it  still  remain. 
One  of  the  commonest  forms  is  called  nangyo,  and  consists  of 
various  austerities  such  as  standing  under  waterfalls,  fasting 
and  feats  of  endurance.  The  repetition  of  mantra  is  still  quite 
common ;  and  various  kinds  of  charms  are  extensively  used. 

The  most  notable  ascetics  of  the  feudal  period  were  the 
Yamahushis  (lit.  "mountain  dwellers";  of  the  Shugen  (fgi^) 
school  founded  by  En  no  Shokaku  (see  page  35).  Members  of 
this  m^'sterious  order  were  much  feared  at  one  time  on  account 
of  their  occult  arts.  But  as  these  degenerated  into  sorcery  and 
fell  into  disrepute.  In  fact,  in  the  early 
part  of  the  present  Meiji  era,  such  practices 
were  forbidden  by  law.  Before  the  Re- 
storation, however,  the  YainabusJds  and 
other  practisers  of  occult  arts  belonged  to 
a  regular  organization  (the  Shugen-shu),  of 
which  the  nominal  head  was  a  member  of 
one  of  the  Kuge,  or  Court  noble  families 
in  Kyoto,  named  Tsuchimikado. 

Nichiren  and  Kobo  Daishi,  the  famous 
priests,  were  believed  to  possess  magical 
powers,  and  some  curious  phenomena  are  related  in  connection 
with  them.  Fiu^ther  information  on  this  subject  is  given  in 
vOccult  Arts,  on  page  212. 




By  permission  of  the  Gaho-sha. 

EN  NO  SHOKAKU  WALKING  ON  THE  WAVES    (see  page  35). 
(Painted  by  Matsumoto  Fuko). 




Kukai,  or  Kobo  Daislii,  the  famous  priest  who  founded 
the  Shingon  sect  of  Buddhism,  was  one  of  the  greatest  thinkers 
that  ever  appeared  in  Japan.  He  was  born  in  Sanuki  Province 
in  A.D.  774,  and  from 
childhood  was  remark- 
able for  his  sagacity.  At 
the  age  of  fifteen  he  went 
to  Kyoto  to  study  the 
Chinese  classics;  and  in 
a  few  years  could  read 
and  write  this  difficult 
language  as  if  it  were  his  native  tongue. 

At  the  age  of  twenty  he  became  a  Buddhist  priest ;  and  by 
the  time  he  was  thirty-one,  he  became  so  advanced  in  wisdom 
that  he  was  selected  by  the  Emperor  to  go  to  China  for 
further  study.  For  China  at  that  time  was  more  advanced  in 
culture  and  civilization  than  any  other  country  in  the  world ; 
and  many  great  priests  appeared  in  that  country,  where  the 
sacred  books  of  Buddhism  had  been  translated,  and  were 
deepl}-  studied. 

It  was  under  one  of  the  greatest  of  these  priests,  named 
Keikwa,  that  Kobo  studied;  and  in  two  jears  he  was  able 
to  master  even  the  most  esoteric  teachings.  So  that  when  he 
returned  to  Japan  in  806,  no  priest  in  the  whole  land  could 
compare  with  him,  and  he  was  treated  with  profound  respect 
even  by  the  Emperor.  He  is  credited  with  the  possession  of 
magical  powers  such  as  writing  in  running  water,  and  making 
his  body  appear  as  if  blazing  with  light. 

In  8J.6,  he  established  a  temple  on  Mt.  Ko3'a  in  Kii  Pro- 
vince, and  lived  there  most  of  the  time  until  his  death  in  835, 
at  the  age  of  sixty-two. 




Wake  no  Kijomaro  will  always  be  remembered  as  a  fearless 
patriot  who  rescued  the  Imperial  House  from  a  very  serious 
danger.  For  during  the  reign  of  the  Empress  Koken  (749 — 
759)  he  thwarted  the  designs  of  a  powerful  and  ambitious 
priest  named  Dokyo  who  actually  aimed  to  enthrone  himself  as 
Emperor,  with  temporal  as  well  as  spiritual  power. 

The  Empress  Koken  was  an  ardent  believer  in  Buddhism ; 
but  unfortiniately  she  came  under  the  influence  of  this  evil 
priest,  and  granted  almost  everything  he  asked  for.  He 
dwelt  in  tlie  Imperial  house  and  acquired  the  title  of  Great 
Chancellor  of  the  Empire,  and  even  Ho-b — a  title  given  to 
retired  Emperors.  But  Dokyo  was  not  satisfied  with  being 
the  most  powerful  subject :  his  insatiable  ambition  aimed 
still  higher,  and  at  last  he  made  known  to  the  Empress  his 
long-cherished  scheme. 

Then  the  Empress  in  her  perplexity  decided  to  consult  the 
god  Hachiman,  and  despatched  a  court  official  named  Wake  no 
Kiyomaro  to  the  Usa  shrine  in  Buzen  Province  for  this  pur- 
pose. Dokyo  was  prepared  for  this  move,  however,  and 
secretly  approached  Kiyomaro  with  the  offer  to  make  him 
administrator  of  the  Empire,  if  he  brought  back  a  favom^able 

report.  At  last  Kiyomaro  retm-ned 
with  the  oracle's  reply.  "  Only  one 
of  the  Imperial  line  can  become  Em- 
peror. Such  a  lawless  and  self- 
seeking  man  as  Dokyo  should  be  at 

once  removed." 

95523i^^fe^SiTOCT  Dokyo  was  furious  when  this 
answer  came,  and  Kiyomaro  was  banished  to  a  remote 
province.  But  when  the  Empress  died  shortly  afterwards  the 
downfall  of  the  crafty  priest  soon  followed.  While  the  faithful 
Kiyomaro  was  summoned  to  court  again  by  her  successor,  the 
Emperor  Kwammu,  and  made  Minister  of  the  Home  Depart- 


#     # 


^^,  --  ))*w^';  f  /' 

-^'  f  ^' 





Tamuramaro,  born  iu  A.  D.  758,  was  the  first  of  tlie  great  "^ 
warrior  statesmen  of  Japan.  He  became  distinguished  during  _^ 
the  campaigns  against  the  aboriginal  barbarians  called  Ezo  (or         ™ 

Aino)  who  still  held   about  a  fourth  _ 

of  the   country,   and   stubbornly  re-  ^^      '*•'  Sli^^^         ^*J 

sisted   the  advance  of  the   civilizing 
invaders.     In   these    campaign^  Ta- 
muramaro     showed     great     military 
talent,    and    was    finally    given   the 
supreme  command.    He  was  appoint- 
ed Great  Barbarian-Subduing  General  {Sei-i-tai-sliogun),  being 
the  first  to  hold  this  title.    By  802  he  had  subdued  the  uprising 
of  the  barbarians,  and  on  his  return  he  was  made  Minister  of 
Justice  and  a  Councillqir  at  the  Imperial  Court.     And  in  810, 
when  there  was  danger  of  civil  war  breaking  out,  he  was  put 
at  the  head  of  the  Imperial  forces,  and  his  rank  was  raised  to 
that  of  Cliief  Councillor.     Thus  by  sheer  merit,  he  rose  to  be 
the  highest  subject  in  the  Empire. 

He  became  a  model  for  warriors  of  later  days  ;  and  the  Sho- 
guns  who  came  after  him  would  go  to  worship  at  his  tomb,  and 
invoke  the  aid  of  his  spirit  before  setting  out  on  their  military 
enterprises.  Tamuramaro  was  *'  a  fine  figure  of  a  man,  with 
eyes  like  a  falcon's,  and  a  beard  the  colour  of  gold."  Brave 
and  fierce  as  a  lion  in  time  of  war,  he  was  a  mild  and  kindly 
knight  at  other  times.  A  manly  gentleman  of  the  best  Yamato 



There  is  hardly  a  town  or  village  in  Japan  where  the  Shinto 
shrine  called  Tenjin-sama,  or  Tenman-gii,  is  not  found.  Tenjin 
is  the  patron  saint  of  men  of  letters  and  students ;  and  formerly 
the  twenty-fifth  day  of  each  month  w^as  kept  as  a  holiday  sacred 
to  Tenjin-sama. 

Now,  Tenjin  is  simply  an  honorary  name  given  to  Sugawara 
no  Michizane,  who  lived  about  a  thousand  years  ago.  The  Su- 
gawara was  an  old  family,  and  learning  and  literature  formed 
its  hereditary  profession ;  but  it  was  Michizane  who  made  the 
family  famous  in  the  history  of  Japan.  Even  as  a  boy  he 
showed  wonderful  talent,  and  composed  an  excellent  ipoem  in 
Chinese  when  only  seven  years  old. 

He  was  appointed  teacher  of  the  3'Oung  prince  who  after- 
wards became  the  Emperor  Uda  (A.  D.  888-898) ;  and  under 
his  wise  tutelage  this  young  Emperor  became  an  exemplary 
ruler.  In  fact,  this  reign  is  considered  by  historians  to  be  the 
golden  age  of  Japan.  But  the  Fujiwara  family,  that  for  cen- 
turies had  controlled  the  court,  at  last  compelled  Uda  to 
abdicate  in  favour  of  his  young  son  Daigo,  though  for  a  time 
Michizane  remained  as  a  councillor  and  Udaijin  (Minister  of 

the  Right).  At  last, 
however,  Tokihira,  head 
of  the  Fujiwara  family, 
became  envious  of  Mi- 
chizane's  influence,  and 
by  false  charges  had 
him  banished  as  an  ex- 
ile to  Kyushu,  where 
he  spent  lonely  and  sorrowful  days  until  his  death  two  years 
later  (in  903),  at  the  age  of  fifty-nine.  His  one  consolation  was 
the  possession  of  a  robe  presented  to  him  by  the  Emperor, 
which  he  regarded  with  reverence,  and  cherished  in  loving 
memory  of  the  royal  giver. 


Gazing  at  the  Emperor's  Gift. 



Hacliiinautaro  Yoshiie  of  tlie  Minamoto  clan  was  a  contem- 
porary of  William  the  Conqueror.  When  quite  a  young  man  he 
went  with  his  father  Yoriyoshi  at  the  head  of  a  large  army  to 
subjugate  a  very  powerful  rebel  chief- 
tain in  Mutsu  Province,  named  Abe 
no  Toritoki.  For  nine  years  fierce 
warfare  continued,  till  the  rebels  were 
£Lt  last  subdued.      Tliis   is  generally 

referred  to  in  history  as  "  Tlie  earlier  nine  years'  war,"  to 
distinguish  it  from  another  campaign  called  "  The  later  three 
years'  war  "  in  which  Yoshiie  was  engaged  twenty-four  years 

The  northern  half  of  Japan  was  at  this  time  occupied  by 
hostile  barbarians ;  but  owing  mainly  to  the  efforts  of  the  Mi- 
namoto clan,  they  were  gradually  subjugated.  It  was  here 
especially  that  the  wisdom  and  generosity  of  Yoshiie  were  of 
great  service.  For  he  governed  these  wild  people  with  such 
dignity  and  kindness  tliat  at  last  they  came  to  look  upon  him 
with  love  and  respect. 

It  was  chiefly  owing  to  the  influence  and  popularity  of  Yoslii- 
ie,  that  his  descendant  Yoritomo  was  able  to  establish  a  power- 
iul  feudal  government  at  Kamakura  a  hundred  and  fifty  years 





Lake  Biwa  in  the  province  of  Omi  is  the  largest  lake       r 
in  Japan,  and  is  about  two  hundred  miles  in  circum- 
ference.    In  its  neighbourhood  there  are  many  places 
of  historic  interest ;  but  among  them  the  old  temple 
called  Isldyamadera  stands  first.     Visitors  to  Lake 
Biwa  should  not  fail  to  see  this  ancient  temple, 
for  it  was  in  a  room  here,  that  the  famous  novel 
called   Genji  Monogatari  was  written  by  Mura- 
saki  Shikibu. 

She  was  the  widow  of  Fujiwara  INobutaka, 
a  high  officer,  and  became  one  of  the  court 
ladies  of  the  Empress  J6tomon-in.  Li 
order  to  relieve  the  tedium  of  her  royal 
mistress  who  at  that  time  was  confin- 
ed to  her  bed  with  a  long  illness,  Mu- 
rasaki  Shikibu  retired  to  this  lonely  temple,  and  there  wrote  the 
famous  story  that  has  become  a  classic  in  Japan.  In  a  style  of 
great  delicacy  and  literary  charm,  the  story  tells  of  the  adven- 
tures of  a  young  nobleman  named  Genji ;  and  thro^vs  much 
light  on  the  court  life  of  that  time.  It  is  all  the  more  remark- 
able when  we  consider  that  this  story  was  written  about  a 
thousand  years  ago — before  the  Norman  Conquest. 

Part  of  the  book  has  been  translated  into  English  by  Baron 
Suyematsu ;  but  naturally  much  is  lost  in  translation.  The 
beauty  of  the  work  can  be  fully  appreciated  only  when  it  is. 
read  in  the  original. 


Writing  her  famous  book  in  the  temple. 



Kamakura  Gongoro  was  a  warrior  in  the  service  of  Hachi- 
mautaro  Yosliiie  and  fouglit  under  liim  against  the  army  of  the 
northern  rebel  Kiyowara  no  Takehira. 

He  is  remembered  chiefly  for  an  incident  which  well  illus- 
trates the  character  and  temperament  of  warriors  of  that  day. 
It  happened  that  once  when  fighting  at  the  head  of  his  com- 
rades, he  was  shot  with  an  arrow  in  the  right  eye.  In  spite  of 
this,  however,  Gongoro  never  for  a  moment  left  the  ranks.  He 
promptly  broke  off  the  shaft,  and  with  the  arrow-head  still 
remaining  in  the  socket,  sprang  fiercely  forward  to  the  contest 
with  his  long  two-lianded  sword. 

When  the  battle  was  over,  he  tried  to  pull  out.the  arrow-head 
with  his  own  hands,  but  finding  it  impossible,  he  asked  his 
comrade  Miura  Tametsugu  to  pull  it  out  for  him.  But  the 
arrow-head  was  rooted  so  firmly  that,  in  straining  to  pull  it  out, 

Miura  actually  put  his  foot  on  Gongo- 
ros  face.  This,  however,  proved  to  be 
too  much  for  the  fiery  Gongoro.  He 
thrust  away  the  foot,  and  jumping 
up,  challenged  his  friend  to  combat, 
saying  that  he  could  endure  pain  but 
not  rudeness  ;  and  that  it  was  beyond 
•endurance  to  be  trodden  on  the  face  !  Miura  humbly  asked  his 
forgiveness,  and  kneeling  beside  him,  at  last  with  great 
difficulty  pulled  out  the  arrow-head. 



.,^\\  ^t^\  ♦f^lt 

v^iOi''  v^vOi'^  >!^kO/^ 

mii>  m^'  MkM' 



Every  child  in  Japan  knows  about  the  valiant  Tametomo  and 
his  daring  deeds.  His  matchless  skill  with  his  great  bow,  his 
Herculean  strength,  and  lion-like  courage,  made  him  remark- 
able even  among  the  many  great  war- 
riors of  the  illustrious  Minamoto  clan. 
He  was  more  than  seven  feet  in 
height,  and  his  left  arm  being  four 
inches  longer  than  the  right,  he  could 
bend  the  bow  better  than  any  other  man  in  the  land.  It  is 
said  that  the  arrows  used  by  him  were  so  thick  and  long  that 
they  looked  like  spears. 

Asa  child  he  was  wilful  and  unmanageable,  and  his  father 
General  Tameyoshi  sent  him  away  to  Kyuslm  when  he  was. 
only  thirteen  years  old.  But  as  he  grew  up  Tametomo  chal- 
lenged and  conquered  every  provincial  lord  until,  by  the  time 
he  was  eighteen,  he  had  the  whole  of  Kyiishii  under  his  sway. 

When  he  was  twenty-one  years  old,  the  Hogen  civil  war 
broke  out  (in  1156),  and  with  his  father  and  six  brothers  he 
supported  the  Emperor  Sutoku,  and  fought  against  the  l^mperor 
Go-Shirakawa  and  the  w^hole  of  the  Taira  clan.  Many  stories 
are  told  of  his  exploits  at  this  time.  The  odds,  however,  were 
overwhelmingly  against  him,  and  at  last  he  was  taken  prisoner 
and  banished  to  the  island  of  Oshima 
off  the  coast  of  Izu  Province.  But 
even  here  in  exile  his  growing  power  "'■^'^^•^^"^^L^'^ 
at  length  became  a  menace  to  the 

government,  and  a  powerful  fleet  was  sent  to  subdue  him.  One 
account  says  that  he  committed  haraJciri  at  this  time  and  died 
at  the  age  of  thirty- two ;  but  another  tradition  says  tliat  he  es- 
caped to  Loochu  where  he  finally  made  himself  the  king. 



By  permission  of  the  GAlxj-slia. 

STATUE  OF  DARUMA        (see  pa^e  2S). 
(Carved  by  Vamazaki  Choun). 




Kiyomori  (A.D.  1118-1181),  chief  of  the  Taira  clan,  was  a 
crafty  and  ambitious  warrior-statesman.     While  the  chiefs  of 
the  rival  iMinamoto  clan  were  engaged  in  subjugating  rebels 
in  the  eastern   provinces 
the    ancestors    of    Kiyo- 
mori,   who  remained    in 
Kyoto,    took    advantiige 
of  the  situation  gradually 
to  establish  their  ascen- 
dancy over  the  rival  clan. 
And  this  policy  was  con- 
tinued by  Kiyomori.    But 
his  grasping  after  selfish 
power  in  this  way  led  to 

bitter  and  deadly  conflict ;  for  the  Minamoto  men  deeply  re- 
sented his  action,  and  tried  to  cmsli  him  by  force  of  arms. 
They  were  unable  to  do  so,  however,  and  though  Kiyomori  was 
by  no  means  a  great  military  leader,  his  side  was  continually 
victorious,  until  at  last  he  found  himself  the  most  influential 
person  in  Japan.  He  was  the  first  waiTior  to  assume  the  title 
of  iJajodaijin  (prime  minister)  which  imtil  then  had  been  strict- 
ly limited  to  the  heads  of  the  Fujiwara  family. 

Kiyomori  was  a  man  of  arbitrary  and  violent  nature,  and 
ruthlessly  crushed  all  whom  he  suspected  of  acting  against  him. 
Even  emperors  and  princes  were  treated  by  him  with  the  scant- 
iest ceremony ;  and  in  consequence  of  his  frequent  abuse  of 
power  he  was  both  hated  and  feared.  His  record,  hoYfever,  is 
not  wholly  bad,  for  he  did  good  service  to  the  maritime  trade 
by  establishing  the  port  of  Fukuwara  near  Kobe ;  and  also  it  is 
said,  by  excavating  the  Ondo  strait,  and  making  a  short  cut  to 
Kure,  now  one  of  the  principal  naval  stations  in  Japan. 



Few  women  have  ever  experienced  such  a  rise  and  fall  of 
fortune  as  Taira  no  Tokuko,  or  Kenrei  Monin,  as  she  is  general- 
ly called.  She  was  the  daughter  of  Kiyomori,  chief  of  the 
Taira  clan,  and  was  brought  up  with  great  care  and  tenderness. 
She  grew  up  a  very  highly  cultured  and  accomplished  lady  and 
was  made  the  wife  of  the  Emperor  Takakura.  Soon  a  son  was 
born  to  her,  and  she  was  probably  one  of  the  happiest  women 
in  the  land. 

'Jhis  happiness  did  not  last  long,  however,  for  misfortunes 
overtook  her  in  quick  succession.  First  her  husband  the  Em- 
peror died  at  the  age  of  twenty-one ;  and  the  son,  the  child- 
Emperor  Antoku,  succeeded  to  the  throne  when  only  three  years 
old.  The  next  misfortune  was  the  death  of  her  father  Kiyomo- 
ri, which  happened  at  a  most  critical  time.  For  Yoritomo  and 
other  members  of  the  Minamoto  clan  had  risen  in  revolt,  and 
the  death  of  Kiyomori  left  the  Taira  clan  leaderless  and  unable 
to  hold  their  own,  so  that  at  last  the}'  were  compelled  to  flee 
from  Kyoto  with  the  child-Emperor  and  his  mother.  But  mis- 
fortune continued  to  follow  them,  and  after  several  defeats  they 
were  at  last  utterly  destroyed  in  the  great 
sea-fight  at  Dannoura  (in  1185). 

At  this  time,  seeing  that  her  condition 
was  quite  hopeless,  Kenrei  Monin  tried  to 
drown  herself  with  her  son  ;  but  she  alone 
was  rescued  and  taken  to  Kyoto.  She  was 
now  the  only  member  of  the  Taira  family 
living  in  the  world,  and  her  loneliness  can 
be  imagined.  She  became  a  Buddhist  nun, 
and  died  at  the  age  of  fifty-seven.  Many  pilgrims  visit  her 
tomb  at  Ohara,  a  quiet  village  about  seven  miles  from  Kyoto. 




Minamoto  no  Yosliitoino  (A.D.  1123-1160),  father  of  the 
famous  brothers  Yoritomo  and  Yoshitsune,  was  himself  a 
great  miUtarj  leader,  and  played  an  important  part  in  the 
earl}'  stages  of  the  long  and  bloody  strife 
between  the  Taira  and  the  Minamoto  clans. 
In  the  civil  war  of  the  Hogen  era  (in 
1156)  he  first  became  prominent,  when 
with  Ki^'omori,  chief  of  the  Taira  clan, 
he  supported  the  Emperor  Go-8hirakawa 
against  the  Ex-Emperor  Sutoku,  the  rival 
claimant  to  the  throne.  In  this  conflict 
he  was   obliged   to  fight  against   his  own 

father  and  brothers  who  were  on  the  opposing  side.  And 
though  victorious,  the  Minamoto  clan  was  greatly  weakened  by 
the  heavy  losses  it  sustained. 

The  crafty  and  ambitious  Kiyomori  was  quick  to  turn  this 
Minamoto  disadvantage  to  his  own  account ;  and  establishing 
his  ascendancy'  over  Yoshitomo,  sought  to  grasp  the  reins  of 
lX)wer  in  his  own  hands.  In  resentment  of  this  artfulness, 
Yoshitomo  at  last  rallied  the  Minamoto  followers  with  the 
object  of  putting  down  the  Taira  clan.  But  fate  was  against 
him,  and  he  suffered  a  crushing  defeat.  Yoshitomo  and  a  few 
of  his  gallant  retainers  cut  their  way  through  the  enemy,  and 
escaped  to  Owari  Province ;  but  were  finally  killed  by  treachery 
on  tlieir  own  side.  Most  of  his  family  were  taken  prisoners 
and  ruthlessl}'  slaughtered  by  Kiyomori;  but  Yoritomo,  then 
only  thirteen,  and  Yoshitsune,  a  mere  baby,  were  spared. 
And  by  a  striking  tarn  of  fate  it  was  these  two  who,  years 
later,  by  their  skill  and  energy  overthrew  tlieir  hereditary  foes, 
aud  finally  restored  the  fortunes  of  the  Minamoto  clan. 




Tokiwa  Gozen,  mother  of  the  famous  Yoshitsmie,  was  left  a 
widow  when  quite  young.  Her  husband,  General  Yoshimota 
of  the  Minamoto  clan,  was  slain  with  all  his  men  by  Kiyomori 
and  his  followers  of  the  Taira  clan;  and  Tokiwa  Gozen  and 
her  children  were  left  defenceless.  And  seeing  that  it  was 
Kiyomori's  evident  intention  to  exterminate  all  of  the  Minamoto 
clan  that  he  could  lay  hands  on,  she  took  her  three  children 
and  hid  herself  in  a  quiet  country  place,  where  she  could  not 
be  found. 

But  the  relentless  Kiyomori  conceived  a  cruel  plan  to 
discover  her  whereabouts.  He  ordered  her  mother  to  be 
brought  before  him,  and  threatened  to  kill  her  by  slow  torture 
if  she  did  not  reveal  her  daughter's  hiding-place.  When  news 
of  this  somehow  reached  Tokiwa  Gozen,  her  terrible  anxiety 
may  be  imagined.  Unable  to  endure  the  thought  of  her 
mother's  suffering,  she  took  her  three  children  and  set  out  for 
the  capital.  And  when  at  last  she  entered  Kiyomori's  pre- 
sence, she  made  an  agonized  appeal  for  mercy. 

Kiyomori's  hard  heart  was  touched  by 
her  appeal,  and  he  was  filled  with  admira- 
tion of  her  filial  piety  and  rare  beauty. 
He  promised  to  spare  the  life  of  her  mother 
and  her  children  ;  but  on  one  condition : 
that  she  should  become  his  wife !  For 
the  sake  of  her  loved  ones,  Tokiwa  Gozen 
at  last  consented  to  this ;  but  she  never  let 
her  son  Yoshitsune  forget  the  duty  to  his 
dead  father  demanded  by  the  stern  code  of  that  day.  How  the 
young  warrior  later  fulfilled  this  obligation,  and  restored  the 
fortunes  of  the  Minamoto  clan  is  another  story. 



Minamoto  Yoritomo  (A.D.  1147-1199)  was  the  first  of  the 
great  Shoguns,  and  the  founder  of  the  feudal  geovrnment 
which  continued  up  to  the  dawn  of  the  present  Meiji  Era. 

He  was  the  third  son  of 
Yoshitomo,  Chief  of  the 
Minamoto  clan.  When  he 
was  about  thirteen  years  old, 
his  father  and  many  of  his 
relatives  were  killed  in  battle, 
when  the  Minamoto  was  de- 
feated by  the  Taira  clan.  On 
account  of  his  youth,  however,  Yoritomo  was  spared  ;  but  he 
was  banished  to  Izu  Province  where  he  lived  a  very  solitary 
life  until  he  grew  up  to  manhood. 

Meanwhile,  the  gross  abuse  of  power  on  the  part  of  the 
Taira  family  caused  deep  resentment  among  the  nobles  and 
military  men  of  Kyoto.  And  at  last  Prince  Mochihito  rose 
against  the  Taira  clan,  and  sent  a  message  to  Yoritomo  urging 
him  to  raise  an  army.  Yoritomo  gladly  responded  to  the  call 
to  arms,  and  this  was  the  turning  point  in  his  life. 

Within  a  few  years  he  was  able  practically  to  annihilate 
the  Taira  clan ;  and  at  last  became  the  chief  war  lord  in  Japan. 
He  established  a  new  government  in  Kamakura,  and  assumed 
the  title  of  Shogun.  From  this  time  the  word  Shogun  came 
to  possess  a  new  meaning,  for  thenceforward  it  signified  in 
fact  the  actual  ruler  of  Japan. 




Masa-ko,  wife  of  the  Sliogmi  Yoritomo,  was  a  remarkable 
woman.  She  was  a  daughter  of  Hojo  Tokimasa,  a  x^owerful 
chieftain  of  Izu  Province,  and  when  twenty-one  years  old 
secretly  married  Yoritomo,  who  w^as  then  an  exile  in  that 
province.  But  her  father,  knowing  nothing  of  this,  promised 
her  hand  to  Taira  no  Kanetaka,  the  governor  of  Izu  Province, 
w^ho  lived  in  a  castle  neo^r  by.  When  Masa-ko  was  told  of  this 
by  her  father,  she  was  in  a  great  dilemma.  For  on  the  one 
hand,  to  leave  her  husljand  was  impossible  to  her ;  and  on  the 
other,  to  refuse  to  marry  the  governor  would  cause  the  ruin  of 
her  family.  At  last  she  agreed  to  her  father's  proposal ;  but 
on  the  evening  of  the  wedding,  she  managed  to  escape  from 
the  governor's  house,  and  concealed  herself  in  an  out-of-the- 
w^ay  place  known  only  to  Yoritomo. 

During  his  whole  life  Yoritomo  loved  and  respected  his 
faithful  wife,  who  bore  him  two  sons  and  two  daughters. 
When  Yoritomo  died  in  1199,  she  shaved  her  head  after  the 
custom  of  that  age ;  but  she  held  'firmly  the  reins  of  govern- 
ment for  the  sake  of 
^'^  her  young  sons  who 

succeeded  Yoritomo 
as  Shoguns.  In  fact, 
all  through  her  life 

""^  power  behind  the 
government,  and 
was  therefore  called 
"Ama-Shogun"  (lit.  the  "Nun  Shogun",.  And  dm^ng  those 
years  the  country  enjoyed  unbroken  peace,  for  none  dared  to 
oppose  the  government  at  Kamakura.  She  died  in  12'25,  at 
the  age  of  sixty-seven. 



YOSHITSUNfe  ON  HORSEBACK        (see  page  63). 
About  to  descended  the  hill  to  attack  the  Taira  army. 



The  warfare  between  the  Taira  and  the  Minamoto  clans  in 
Japan  may  be  compared  to  the  Wars  of  the  Roses  carried  on 
between  York  and  Lancaster  in  England.  For  about  fifty 
years  these  great  Japanese  clans, 
with  varying  fortunes,  doggedly 
carried  on  the  strife.  Among  the 
many  heroes  of  the  Minamoto  clan 
none  stands  out  more  prominently 
than  the  gallant,  straightforward 
and  handsome  hero  Yoshitsune.  He 
fought  many  fierce  battles  both  on 
land  and  sea ;  but  his  greatest  achievement  was  the  sea-fight 
at  Dannoura  near  Shimonoseki,  when  he  utterly  destroyed  the 
enemy,  after  driving  them  to  this  place  from  their  stronghold 
in  Kyoto.  This  was  the  first  naval  battle  ever  fought  in 
Japan;  and  it  took  place  about  seven  hundred  years  ago. 
Yoshiisune  may  be  called  the  Admiral  Togo  of  that  day. 

The  latter  part  of   Yoshitsune 's  short  and   brilliant  career 

was  unfortunately  tragical.     His  elder  brother  Yoritomo  was 

filled  with  envy  of  Yoshitsune's  popularity,  and  determined  to 

kill  him.     Whether  he  was  really  killed  by  Yoritomo  or  not, 

^,,.^^^^  is  a  question  that  historians 

'^>'^^^^v\^  are   imable   to    decide.     At 

.>^  all  events,  history  says  that 

^-^j^    ^         he  was  killed,  together  with 

'  ^^       '  '•       his  wife  and  children,  when 
he  was  thirty-one  years  old. 
"'"^  On  the  other  hand,  however, 

some  people  believe  that  he  tcx^k  to  the  sea  with  many  faith- 
ful followers,  and  finally  became  a  great  king  of  Northern 
Asia.  In  fact,  some  even  believe  that  Yoshitsime  was  none 
other  than  the  terrible  warrior  Genghis  Khan ! 




At  Hacliimau  temple  in  Kamakura,  at  tlie  foot  of  tlie  stone 
steps  leading  to  the  temple,  there  is  a  small  square  building 
painted  red.  This  is  a  kind  of  stage  where  sacred  music  and 
dances  are  performed. 

About  seven  hundred  years  ago,  when  Yoritomo  was  Shogun, 
this  building  was  used  for  a  performance  that  is  frequently 
mentioned  in  Japanese  literature.  Yoshitsune,  younger  brother 
of  Yoritomo,  had  a  beautiful  and  clever  girl  named  Shizuka  as 
his  wife ;  and  she  was  very  skilful  in  dancing  and  other  arts. 
When  Yoshitsune  was  obliged  to  leave  Kamakura  for  the 
north,  after  incurring  the  displeasure  of  his  brother,  Shizuka 
remained  alone  in  Kamakura.  Yoritomo  and  his  wife  Masa-ko, 
having  heard  of  her  fame  as  a  dancer,  requested  her  to  give 
a  performance  on  this  stage  at  Hachiman  temple ;  and  of 
course  Shizuka  was  reluctantly  compelled  to  obey  the  request 
of  the  Shogmi.  Hundreds  of  Daimyos  and  other  nobles  were 
also  invited  to  see  the  performance.  Shizuka  faced  the  audi- 
ence fearlessly,  and  began  her  famous  dance.  At  the  same 
time  she  sang  two  songs  which  she  had  composed,  expressing 
her  3^earning  after  the  loved  husband  from  whom  she  had  been 

Yoritomo  got  extremely  angry  at  this, 
saying  that  it  was  outrageous  to  make 
songs  about  a  traitor  like  Yoshitsune,  and 
to  sing  them  in  jjublic.  His  wife  Masa-ko, 
however,  deeply  sympathised  with  Shizuka, 
and  finally  appeased  the  anger  of  Yori- 
tomo. Afterwards  some  beautiful  gifts 
were  presented  to  Shizuka  by  Yoritomo 
and  Masa-ko. 

This  famous  historical  episode  forms  the  subject  of   many 
Japanese  pictures  and  dramas. 



l^ancing  before  the  Sliogun  at  Hachiman  in  Kamakura. 



Musaslii  Bo  Benkei,  the  semi-mythical  and  favom:ite  hero 
of  Japanese  children,  was  a  gigantic  priest  who  became  a 
faitliful  retainer  of  Yoshitsmie.  His  thrilling  exploits  are 
tirelessly  told  in  story  and  in  song ;  and  if 
the  tales  of  his  prowess  are  not  all  true, 
they  are  at  least  well  invented. 

Though  a  priest  and  the  son  of  a  priest, 
Benkei  had  little  taste  for  such  a  mild 
career.  At  an  early  age  his  wild  spirit 
broke  out ;  and  after  running  amuck  in  his 
monastery,  and  setting  the  monks  in  an 
uproar,  he  sallied  forth  in  search  of  adven- 
ture. He  determined  to  become  a  mighty  warrior ;  and  swore 
that  by  personal  conquest,  he  would  capture  a  thousand  swords. 
For  this  x>urpose  he  took  his  stand  nightly  on  the  Gojo  Bridge 
in  Kyoto,  and  challenged  every  Samurai  who  happened  to 
pass  by.  And  in  this  way,  it  is  said,  he  fought  and  conquered 
nine  hundred  and  ninety-nine  men,  and  took  away  their 

But  one  night  while  waiting  in  the  moonlight,  he  met  his 
master.  It  was  the  gallant  Yoshitsune  who  accepted  the 
challenge  this  time,  and  gained  the  victory.  The  dramatic 
tale  of  their  encounter  is  too  long  to  record  here.  Suffice  it  to 
say  that  Benkei,  being  fairly  beaten  by  Yoshitsune,  vowed  to 
devote  himself  ever  after  to  the  service  of  this  brave  young 
knight.  And  right  loyally  he  did  so,  and  kept  the  vow  he 





The  men  of  the  Taira  clan  were  on  the  whole  very  effemi- 
nate and  weak  both  in  body  and  mind.  This  was  no  doubt 
due  to  the  courtier's  life  that  they  had  lived  for  many  years 
in  Kyoto.  In  the  last  years  of  their  prosperity  this  effeminacy 
had  reached  the  climax,  and  they  were  warriors  in  name  only. 
Even  when  in  camp  they  made  elaborate  toilets;  and  spent 
much  of  the  time  in  dancing  and  dissipation.  It  was  therefore 
no  wonder  that  they  could  not  resist  the  onslaught  of  Yoshi- 
tsune  and  his  veteran  warriors  from  the  eastern  provinces. 

There  were  some  exceptions,  how^ever,  and  notable  among 
these  was  Taira  no  Noritsune,  a  man.  of  great  bravery  and 
skill  in  archery.  During  the  battle  of  Yashima,  when  fighting 
at  the  head  of  his  followers,  he  almost  succeeded  in  killing 
Yoshitsune  with  his  own  hands.  But  the  faithful  retainers  of 
Yoshitsune,  seeing  their  master's  danger,  covered  him  with 
their  bodies  and  thus  saved  his  life,  though  several  of  them  fell 
pierced  by  the  terrible  shafts  of  Noritsune. 

Again,  at  the  battle  of  Dannoura, 
when  Yoshitsune's  ship  happened  to 
pass  nearby,  Noritsune  jumped  on 
board,  bent  on  a  personal  encounter 
with  his  enemy ;  but  the  light-footed 
Yoshitsune  also  did  some  jumping 
and  thus  evaded  the  sudden  on- 
slaught. Then,  the  disappointed  Noritsune,  after  laying  about 
him  with  his  sword  till  he  could  fight  no  longer,  took  two  of 
the  enemy's  strong  men  in  his  grasp,  and  hurling  himself  into 
the  sea,  perished  with  them  in  the  water. 


NASU  NO  YOICIII  SHOOTING  AT  THE  FAN    (seepage  71). 



Nasn  no  Yoichi  may  be  called  the  William  Tell  of  Japan ;         ^ 
and  altliougli  he  lived  about  seven  hmidred  years   ago,   his         na 
wonderful  feat  of  archery  is  still  remembered ;  and  the  story 
of  his  skill  with  the   bow  is  one  _-^^-^-~r>^  BBL 

that  all  Japanese   children  have 
been  told. 

When  Yoshitsime  attacked  the 

army     of     the     Taira     clan     at 

Yashima,     the     enemy     resisted 

stubbornly  at  first  and  repelled  several  attacks,  with  heavy 
casualties  on  both  sides.  Towards  evening  both  armies  were 
very  tired,  and  it  was  during  a  pause  in  the  fighting  that  this 
incident  occurred.  In  the  sportive  spirit  which  men  sometimes 
show  even  in  time  of  deadly  warfare,  the  Taira  side  sent  out 
a  boat  with  a  young  and  beautiful  maiden  in  it.  And  nailed 
to  a  pole  set  up  in  the  bow  of  the  boat  was  a  scarlet  fan  with 
a  golden  sun  in  the  centre.  When  the  boat  drew  near  to  the 
beach  where  the  Minamoto  warriors  were  ranged,  the  maiden 
beckoned  to  them  and  challenged  their  best  marksman  to 
shoot  with  a  bow  and  arrow  at  the  fan. 

Yoichi,  a  lad  of  seventeen  and  small  of  stature,  was  chosen 
for  the  attempt.  He  drove  his  horse  forward  into  the  sea, 
and  stopped  several  hundred  yards  from  the  boat.  Very  care- 
fully he  took  aim,  knowing  that  to  miss  would  bring  discredit 
on  his  side  and  on  himself ;  and  ;then  with  bow  bent  to  the 
utmost  he  let  ^y.  The  arrow  flew  straight  to  the  mark  and 
struck  the  fan  just  one  inch  above  the  rivet.  For  a  moment 
the  fan  fluttered  in  the  air,  and  then  fell  into  the  sea,  amidst 
thunders  of  generous  applause  from  the  watching  armies  on 
both  sides. 



Few  more  calm  and  lovely  spots  may  be  fomid  in  Japan 
tlian  tlie  shores  of  Suma  and  Maiko,  tlie  famous  watering 
places  near  Kobe.  But  about  seven  hundred  years  ago  this 
peaceful  neighbourhood  was  the  scene  of  a  fierce  and  bloody 
battle  in  which  the  Minamoto  defeated  and  finally  crushed  the 
Taira  clan  (in  1184). 

Most  of  the  Taira  fugitives  took  to  boats  and  attempted 
to  escape ;  but  the  victorious  Minamoto  men  were  hotly  in 
piursuit  of  them.  Just  then,  a  richly  attired  and  noble  young 
warrior  of  the  Taira  clan,  named  Atsumori,  was  seen  hasten- 
ing towards  a  boat;  but  an  old  warrior  named  Kumagai 
Naozan^  rushed  between  him  and  the  sea  and  challenged  him 
to  combat.  The  yomig  man  at  once  accepted  the  challenge ; 
and  very  soon  a  fierce  duel  commenced. 

After  a  hard  struggle  Kumagai  finally  triumphed,  and  with 
his  opponent  down  on  the  beach,  was  on  the  point  of  dealing 
a  death  blow  with  his  dagger  when  under  the  helmet  he  caught 
sight  of  his  enemy's  youthful  and  handsome  face.  The  old 
warrior  was  much  moved,  as  he  had  a  son  of  about  the  same 

age  as  this  noble  youth ;  and  out  of 
s^^mpathy  as  a  father,  he  tliought  to 
spare  the  young  man  and  let  him 
escape.  But  seeing  that  the  soldiers 
of  his  side  were  swarming  on  the 
beach,  both  knew  that  there  was  no 
hope;  so  Atsumori  begged  to  be 
put  to  death  lest  Kumagai  should  merely  be  branded  as  a 
coward,  if  he  tried  to  let  him  escape.  And  thus  the  old 
warrior  had  to  perform  the  cruel  task ;  but  he  was  so  touched 
at  heart  that  when  the  war  was  over,  he  shaved  his  head  and 
spent  the  rest  of  his  life  as  a  j^riest. 


EN  no  MORITO'S  FA'rAT>  DEED        (see  page  75)- 
(Fainted  by  O^atii  (kkko). 



The   tr'ie   story  of  Eudo  Morito  forms  a  romantic  tragedy 

the   like  of  which  one  does  not   often   find   even  in  fiction. 

When  he  was  a  yomig  knight  in  the  service  of  the  Ex-Emperor 

Toba,  he  fell  in  love  with  a  beautiful 

girl  named  Kesa  whom  he  happened 

to  meet ;  but  on  making   enquiries 

he  found  that  she  was  already  the 

wife  of  a  court  official  named  Wata- 

nalie   Wataru.     So    great    was   his 

infatuation,  however,  that  regardless 

of  everything,  he  determined  to  take  her  from  her  husband  and 

make   her  his   own  wife.     He  tried  all  means  to  induce  the 

mother  of  Kesa  to  have  her  divorced,  and  swore  that  if  she 

did  not  do  so  he  would  kill  both  of  them. 

Knowing  the  desperate  nature  of  Endo,  the  mother  at  last 

an  despair  api)ealed  to  her  daughter.     Kesa  knew^  that  to  leave 

the  husband  she  loved  was  out  of  the  question ;  but  thinking  to 
save  her  mother,  she  decided  U]^x)n  a  terrible  solution  of  the 
dilemma.  She  called  Endo  to  her  mother's  house,  and  told 
liim  she  would  contrive  that  night  to  have  her  husband  wash 
his  long  hair.  " Enter  the  house  stealthily,"  she  said,  "and 
when  3'ou  feel  the  damp  hair  of  the  sleeper,  strike  !  and  /  shall 
he  freer 

Secretly  at  midnight  Endo  entered  the  room ;  and  groi)ing 
in  the  darkness  his  hand  at  length  grasped  the  long  wet  liair. 
With  one  thrust  of  his  dagger  he  dealt  a  death  blow,  and  fled 
into  the  night.  But  it  was  Kesa  and  not  her  husband  that  he 
had  mistakenly  slain. 

The  overwhelming  grief  and  repentance  of  Endo  sliook 
hiiu  to  the  very  depths  oi  his  being.  Afterwards  he  became 
the  famous  priest  Mongaku,  and  si)ent  the  rest  of  his  life  in 
trying  to  help  the  Aveak  and  the  oppressed.  He  was  greatly 
esteemed  by  Yoritomo,  the  first  of  the  Shogmis. 





Saigjo,    the   ]_x)et-priest,   lived   about   seven   Iimiclred  yeare; 

ago.     He   is   considered   to  be   one   of    the    best  writers    of 

fanJca,    or  short  poems  of  five  lines;    and   his  poetical  works 

have  been  collected  into  a  book  called  Yamoga-sJm.     The  iairJca 

was  the  favorite  vehicle  of  poetry ;  and  the 

lines    consist   of    5,    7,  5,  7,  7,   syllables, 

making  31  syllables  in  all.     The  poems  of 

Saigyo  are  remarkable   for  their  melody, 

their  depth  of  meaning,  and  genuineness 

of  feeling. 

He  was  born  in  1118,  and  was  originally 
a  warrior  in  the  service  of  the  Ex-Emperor 
Toba.  But  he  soon  became  deeply  in- 
terested in  Buddhism  which  was  very  flourishing  in  those 
days ;  and  at  the  age  of  twenty-tlu-ee  he  shaved  his  head,  and 
leaving  his  wife  and  children  became  a  priest.  Then  began 
his  wandering  life  which  continued  for  fifty  years,  during  which 
he  composed  innumerable  poems  prompted  by  what  he  saAv  and 

His  utter  indifference  to  wealth  and  wordly  things  is  fitly 
shown  by  the  following  well-known  fact.  Once  when  visiting 
Kamakura,  he  w^as  entertained  by  the  Shogun  Yoritomo,  wha 
held  Saigyo  in  high  esteem.  And  when  Saigyo  was  leaving, 
Yoritomo  presented  him  with  a  beautiful  piece  of  carving — 
a  cat  done  in  silver.  But  when  Saigyo  got  outside,  he  relieved 
himself  of  what  he  considered  merely  a  burden  by  giving  the 
cat  to  some  children  who  were  playing  in. the  street. 


NICHIREN,  THE  FAMOUS  PRIEST        (see  page  80). 
Preachinc  bv  the  wavside  in  Kamakura. 




In   the   moral   code  of  Japan  loyalty  and  filial  x^iety  have         tt 
always   been   given    great    importance.     In    fact,   these    two 
virtues  are  very  closely  related :  for  if  a  child  is  not  loyal  and 
olxxlient   to  the  head  and  heart  of 
his  household,   he   is  not  likely  to 
be  loyal  to  the  head  of  the  State. 

In  the  feudal  days,  it  was  con- 
sidered the  duty  of  a  Samurai,  to 
avenge  the  murder  of  his  parent  or 
his   lord.     This   was   called  katald- 

uch'iy  and  was  regarded  as  an  obligation  in  those  days.  The 
first  and  most  notable  example  of  Imtaki-ucM  that  is  recorded 
liapi:)ened  in  1193.  A  great  Daimyo  named  Kudo  Suketsune 
had  ruthlessly  killed  the  father  of  two  brothers  named  Juro 
and  GorO.  And  these  two  boys  determined  to  avenge  their 
fatlier's  cruel  death. 

They  waited  more  than  ten  years  for  an  opx)ortunity ;  and 
^it  last  it  came.  Yoritomo  and  many  Daimyos  and  retainers 
were  out  hunting  near  Mt.  Fuji ;  and  the  Soga  brothers,  hearing 
that  Kudo  Suketsune  was  a  meml>er  of  the  party,  decided  tliat 
the  time  had  come.  They  escaped  notice  by  mixing  with  the 
retainei-s  ;  and  when  night  came,  they  entered  the  tent  of  their 
fatlier's  enemy,  and  called  him  to  a  stern  account.  But  in 
taking  the  life  of  Suketsune  they  also  sacrificed  their  own :  for 
Juro  was  killed  immediately,  and  Goro  the  yomiger  was  taken 
prisoner  and  put  to  death  by  Yoritomo.  This  tragedy  has 
formed  the  subject  of  many  dramas  and  stories,  and  is  very 
"well  known  to  all  Japanese. 



Nicliiren  was  a  great  religious  reformer,  aud  founded  a  new 
sect  of  Buddhism  called  the  Hokke-shu.  He  was  by  nature 
very  vehement  and  combative,  and  his  life  in  man^^  resj^ects 
resembled  that  of  Martin  Luther. 

He  was  born  in  1222  at  Aikawa,  a  small  seaside  village  in 
Awa  Province ;  and  at  the  age  of  twelve,  became  an  acolyte 
in  a  neighbouring  Buddhist  temple  of  the  Jo-do  sect,  and 
studied  so  hard  that,  by  the  age  of  twenty,  he  far  outstripjxid 
the  head  priest  in  knowledge  of  Buddhist  doctrine.  But  he 
gradually  became  dissatisfied  with  the  teachings  he  had 
learned,  and  determined  to  seek  the  true  faith  in  other  sects, 
—  for  there  were  more  than  ten  great  sects  existing  in  Japan  at 
that  time. 

First  he  went  to  Kamakura,  and  studied  the  teachings  of 

the  Zen  (dhydna)  sect,  and  then  w^ent  to  Kyoto,  Kara,  Mt. 
Koya  and  other  centres  of  Buddhism,  and  spent  twelve  years 
in  study  and  discussion.  But  in  his  opinion 
none  of  these  sects  were  conforming  to 
the  true  teachings  of  Buddha;  so  at 
last,  when  he  was  thirty-two  years  old,  he 
founded  a  new  sect  of  his  own  called  the 
Hokke  sect.  And  from  this  time  until  his 
death,  in  1282,  he  devoted  all  his  time 
and  energy  to  the  propagation  of  his  belief. 
He  was  so  vehement  and  aggressive  that 
he  w\as  twice  exiled  by  the  authorities,  and  once  was  on  the 
point  of  being  beheaded.  But  before  he  died,  the  Hokke  sect 
liad  spread  throughout  the  country ;  and  even  now  it  is  one  of 
the  most  influential  sects  in  Japan. 


THE  EMPEROR  GO-DAIGO        (see  page  84). 



111  the  history  of  Japan,  the  name  of  Hojo 
Tokimnne  will  long  be  remembered  as  that  of  a 
patriot  who  did  great  service  to  his  country. 
About  six  Inmdred  years  ago,  in  China  there  arose 
a  dangerous  enemy  to  Japan  called  Kublai  Khan 
whose  conquests  had  extended  even  to  Chosen 
which  was  a  very  weak  country.  Having  invaded 
Chosen,  Kublai  Khan  next  began  to  plan  the 
invasion  of  Japan.  This  was  a  very  critical  time 
in  this  country's  history,  comparable  to  that  of  the  war  between 
Greece  and  Persia,  or  to  that  of  the  attempted  invasion  of 
England  by  the  Spanish  with  their  famous  Armada,  in  the 
reign  of  Queen  Elizabeth. 

At  this  time  Hojo  Tokimmie  was  the  chief  administrator 
mider  the  Shogun ;  and  when  Kublai  Khan  sent  messengers  to 
Japan  making  unreasonable  de- 
mands on  this  country,  Tokimune 
met  them  with  a  stern  refusal. 

At  length,  Kublai  Khan  prepared 
a  great  fleet,  and  sent  about  a 
hundred  thousand  men  to  invade 
Japan  (in  1281).  But  the  ships 
met  the  same  fate  as  that  of  the  Invincible  Armada,  and 
similar  to  that  of  the  Russian  Baltic  Squadron.  In  fact,  out 
of  the  great  host  sent  to  the  shore  of  Kyushii,  only  three  of  the 
men  remained  to  tell  the  tale  of  the  disaster. 







After  Yoritomo  laid  the  foundation  of  feudal  gcn^ernment 
in  Kamakura,  the  Emperor  in  Kyoto  became  a  mere  puppet ; 
and  for  the  six  hundred  and  eighty-two  years  during  which 
the  feudal  system  continued,  the  Emperor  remained  simply  the 
nominal  ruler  of  the  country. 

But  about  five  hundred  and  seventy  years  ago,  an  attempt 
to  recover  the  actual  ruling  power  was  made  by  the  Emperor 
Go-Daigo.  At  first  fortune  favoured  him ;  and  with  the  aid  of 
Kusunoki  Masashige,  Nitta  Yoshisada,  and  many  other  loyal 
chieftains,  he  was  able  to  destroy  Ho  jo  Takatoki  and  the 
government  represented  by  him. 

It  was  only  a  transient  success,  however,  and  soon  matters 
became  worse  than  before.  Perhaps  the  time  was  not  yet 
ripe  for  the  ending  of  tlie  feudal  system.  At  all  events,  the 
majority  of  the  feudal  lords  rose  in  revolt  against  the  Emperor 
and  his  new  government.  And  the  crafty  Ashikaga  Takauji, 
chief  of  the  revolters,  in  order  to  offset  Go-Daigo,  took  one  of 
the  royal  princes  and  made  him  Emperor,  with  himself  the 
power  behind  the  throne.  Thus 
there  existed  two  Emperors  at  the 
same  time,  and  for  about  fifty  years 
each  struggled  for  supremacy. 

The  latter  part  of  the  Emperor 
Go-Daigo's  life  was  very  unhappy. 
He  was  compelled  to  leave  Kyoto, 
and  died  in  retreat  at  Yoshino  in  the  proviirce  of  Yamato. 
Ever}"  year  thousands  of  people  visit  the  tomb  of  this  Emj^eror, 
when  they  go  to  see  the  Yoshino  cherry  blossoms,  which  are 
undoubtedly  the  best  in  all  Japan. 






lu  Kaiiiakura  there  stands  a  beautiful  Sliinto  sliriuo  called 
Oto-noMiya,  sacred  to  tlie  heroic  soul  of  Prince  Morinaga. 
He  ^vas  l^)rn  in  1308,  and  was  the  third  son  of  the  Emperor  Go- 
Paigr).  In  his  youth  he  was  much 
loved  and  trusted  by  his  father,  and 
was  allowed  to  take  part  in  the  Em- 
peror's attempt  to  overthrow  the  Ho  jo 
regent  in  Kamakura.  During  this 
conflict  Prince  Morinaga  showed 
much  bravery  and  intelligence,  and 
did  great  service.  In  fact,  it  was  he  and  Kusunoki  Masashige 
who  lx)re  the  brunt  of  the  strife  in  its  early  stages.  And  when 
xit  last  the  Hojo  family  was  virtually  exterminated  (in  1333)> 
and  a  new  government  established  in  Kyoto,  Prince  Morinaga 
was  given  the  title  of  Shogun.  This  was  a  revival  of  the  origi- 
nal meaning  of  the  word  Shogun,  that  is,  simply  commander-in- 

In  the  meantime,  however,  the  crafty  and  ambitious  Takauji 
had  l)egun  to  harbour  rebellious  projects  against  the  new 
government ;  for  he  keenly  desired  to  l)ecome  Shogun  himself, 
and  regarded  Morinaga  as  the  principle  obstacle  in  the  path  of 
]iis  ambition.  At  last,  by  a  dastardly  intrigue,  he  contrived  to 
have  Prince  Morinaga  accased  of  treachery  to  the  Emperoi^, 
So  the  prince  was  arrested  and  sent  to  Kamakura  where  he  was 
imprisoned  in  a  dungeon,  and  afterwards  cruelly  mm'dered  by 
an  assassin  sent  l)y  Ashikaga  (in  1335).  Even  now  the  cave 
Avhere  he  was  imi)risoned  and  killed  may  be  seen,  just  behind 
the  shrine  called  Oto-no-Miva. 

d^/:  itcP^i^cPa  ♦o^cJ  •cfe*^^  itd^i^ 




Asliikaga  Takauji,  the  first  of  the  Ashikaga  Shoguns,  was 
l)orii  in  13()().  He  was  a  direct  descendant  of  Hachimantaro 
Yoshiie,  the  famous  chief  of  the  Minamoto  clan,  and  for  genera- 
tions his  ancestors  were  great  Daimyos  in  the  province  of  Shi- 
motsnke.  Takauji  was  always  very  proud  of  his  good  lineage, 
and  his  great  ambition  was  to  become  a  militar^^  leader  like  Yo- 

An  opportunity  for  him  to  advance  his  hidden  project  at  last 
came,  when  in  1331  the  Emperor  Go-Daigo  rose  against  the 
Hojo  feudal  government  at  Kamakura.  Takauji  was  appointed 
commander  of  Hojo's  army  ;  but  at  the  last  moment,  instead  of 
fighting  against  the  Emperor,  he  sent  a  message  offering  to 
submit.  This  act  greatly  pleased  the  Enn)eror,  and  when  the 
war  prizes  were  distributed,  Takauji  got  by  far  the  best. 

But  Takauji  was  always  for  himself  :  so  a  few  years  later  (in 
1335),  together  Avitli  a  large  band  of  discontented  feudal  chiefs, 
he  rose  in  revolt  against  the  Emperor ;  and 
in  the  battles  that  followed,  the  forces  of 
Takauji  were  so  completely  victorious  that 
the  Emperor  and  court  were  obliged  to  flee 
from  Kyoto  to  the  mountains  of  Yoshino. 
Meanwhile  the  crafty  Takauji  put  a  new 
^    ^  Emperor    named    Komyo    Tenno    on    the 

fK^\     -      throne,  against  the  legitimate  Emperor  (Go- 
^^     ^       Daigo)  ;  and  strife  between  these  two  rival 
courts  lasted  for  over  fifty  years. 
Takauji  became  Shogun  in  13S8  ;  and  died  in  1358,  at  the 
age  of  fifty-three.     The  nation  has  never  forgiven  his  treaeher- 
ous  conduct  towards  the  Emperor  Go-Daigo, 


KU^UNOKI  MASASHirxF.        t 

<sr»r>  tin  crt^    n  i 



One  of  tlie  famous  places  in  Kobe  is  the  large  slirine  known         ^^ 
as  Nanko-slia,  built  in  honour  of  that  embodiment  of  loyalty 
and  heroism,  Kusunoki  Masashige.    At  the  time  when  this  hero        ^^ 
lived,  neary  six  hundred  years  ago,  there  was  bitter  strife 
going  on  in  the  Imi)erial  Household ;  and  this  continued      0^  W 

for  more  than  fifty  years. 

Of  the  two  rival  Emperors,  Go-Daigo  w\is  the  legiti- 
mate one  ;  but  his  side  was  losing  ground  year  after  year 
until  at  last  it  retained  only  a  few  provinces  in  the 
neighbourhocxl  of  Kyoto.  And  it  was  only  through  the 
heroic  efforts  of  Masashige  and  a  few  other  loyal  chief- 
tains that  the  Emperor  was  able  for  many  years  to  hold 
the  tlnnme,  and  to  wit]istand  the  onslauglit  of  his 
formidable  antagonists. 

At  last,  however,  even  the  dauntless  Masashige  found 
himself  in  a  desperate   condition.     Takauji,    the   com- 
mander-in-chief of  the  enemy,  came  to  attack  Kyoto  w  ith 
an  army  of  half  a  million  men  ;  while  Masashige  could 
muster  barely  eight  hundred  to  fight  against  this  mighty 
host.     He  decided,  however,  to  fight  to  the  end  ;  and  to  die  as 
he  had  lived  in  loyal  service  to  his  Sovereign.     Just  l)efore  the 
battle,  he  called  his  son,  then  only  eleven  years  old,  and  after 
instructing  him  \r>  devote  his  life  to  the  cause  of  the  Em}:>eror, 
gave  him  a  golden  dagger  and  bade  him  farewell.     In  the  battle 
that  followed,  on  the  banks  of  the  Minatogawa,  a  river  near 
Kobe,  his  followers  were  finally  reduced  to  only  seventy-tliree 
men.     Then,  seeing  that  all  was  over,  Masashige  retired  to  a 
farmer's  house  near-by,  and  falling  up^n  his  sword  he  died  (in 



Nitta  Yosliisada  was  a  great  cliieftain  whose  name  will  always 
be  associated  with  that  of  Kusunoki  Masashige  ;  as  tliese  two 
devoted  men  were  the  principal  supporters  of  the  Emperor  Go- 
Daigo.  Nitta  was  a  Daimyo  of  Kotsuke  Province  and  was  a 
descendant  of  Minamoto  no  Yoshiie, — being  thus  of  the  same 
stock  as  Ashikaga  Takauji,  his  rival  and  opponent. 

At  first  he  was  the  commander  of  an  army  sent  by  Hojo 
against  the  Emperor  Go-Daigo ;  but  instead  of  fighting,  he  sent 
a  message  to  Prince  Morinaga  offering  to  go  over  to  the  Em- 
peror's side.  And  this  offer  being  accepted,  he  quickly  retm-n- 
ed  to  his  province  and  raised  an  arm}'  to  fight  against  the  Hojo 
family  at  Kamakura. 

With  this  force  he  attacked  Kamakura  from  three  sides  ;  but 
the  Hojo  army  resisted  with  such  desperate  valour  that  one  of 
Nitta's  armies  suffered  a  great  defeat.  Then  Nitta  decided  to 
take  his  whole  force  round  a  steep  promontory  jutting  out  into 
the  sea  ;  and  the  story  goes  that  he  flung 
his  sword  into  the  water  and  prayed  the 
Sea- God  to  withdraw  the  waves  that  his 
men  might  pass.  A  few  hours  later  Kama- 
km*a  was  reduced  to  ashes,  and  the  fate  of 
the  Hojo  family  was  sealed. 

When  Ashikaga  Takauji  rose  in  revolt 
two  years  later  (in  1335),  Nitta  and  Kusu- 
~~— =^ — ^-  noki  and  other  patriots  supjx)rted  the  Em- 

peror Go-Daigo  and  fought  many  desperate  battles  against  the 
rebels.  In  1388  he  died  fighting  bravely,  wlien  thirty-eight 
years  old. 


(At  Imamuragasaki,  near  Kamakura). 



-!— — »^^»  i?9L_A- 

Ivusniioki  Masatsura,  son  of  Masasliige,  was  onh'  eleven 
3ears  old,  when  the  news  came  that  his  father  had  died  fighting 
in  a  fierce  battle  at  Minatogawa  near  Kobe.  And  the  boy's 
grief  was  so  great  that  he  actually  pre-  vVj^ 

pared  to  commit  harakiri  with  the 
golden  dagger  that  his  father  had  given 
him  when  parting.  But 
fortimately  he  was  stopped 
in  time  by  his  mother. 
"  What  a  weak-minded  cow- 
ard you  are !  "  she  cried.  "  Yomr  father  gave  you  that  dagger 
to  defend  your  Emperor  against  the  traitor  Takauji, — not  to  kill 
yoiu-self  to  no  piu^pose."  Masatsura  at  once  saw  the  justice  of 
his  mother's  rebuke,  and  humbly  begged  her  pardon. 

When  he  grew  to  manhood,  he  entered  the  service  of  the  Em- 
l)eror  Go-Murakami,  son  of  Go-Daigo,  and  fought  very  bravely. 
Although  somewhat  slender  and  weak  in  bod}',  he  had  great 
military  talent ;  and  gained  miany  remarkable  victories  against 
overwhelming  odds.  At  last,  however,  the  enemy  sent  over 
sixty-eight  thousand  men  against  his  force  of  barely  tliree 
thousand.  Nevertheless  Masatsiu-a  resolved  to  fight  to  the 
death.  He  bade  farewell  to  the  Emperor  at  Yoshino ;  and 
wrote  a  famous  poem  on  the  wall  of  a  temple  still  standing  near 
the  tomb  of  the  Emperor  Go-Daigo. 

In  the  desperate  battle  that  followed  at  Shijo  Nawate  (in 
1348),  IVIasatsura  fell  after  a  brave  fight,  when  only  twenty- three 
years  old.  A  beautiful  shrine  called  Shijo-Nawate  Jinja  still 
stands  as  a  monument  to  this  heroic  young  loyalist. 





Masatsura  was  iKjt  only  a  great  warrior,  Ijut  also  an  excep- 
tionally refined  and  noble-minded  man, — a  model  husid  in  every 
way.  Tlie  following  well-known  incidents  in  his  career  throw 
much  light  on  his  character.  At  Urimio  near  Osaka  he  fought 
with  Yamana  Tokiuji,  a  general  sent  by  Ashikaga  Takauji,  and 
gained  a  complete  victory.  In  the  hot  chase  that  followed, 
many  of  the  enemy  fell  into  the  river ;  and  the  generous  Masa- 
tsura  immediately  ordered  his  followers  to  rescue  the  drowning 
men.  About  five  hundred  lives  were  thus  saved,  and  Masatsura 
gave  them  food  and  clotlies  and  treated  them  so  kindly  that 
many  of  them  Ijecame  his  devoted  followers.  Indeed,  they  are 
said  to  have  died  ^\\i\\  him  at  the  battle  of  Shijo  Naw^ate. 

In  the  court  of  the  Emperor  Go-Da igo  there  w^as  a  clever  and 
beautiful  maid  of  honour  named  Ben  no  Naiji.  This  girl  was 
once  kidnapped  by  a  band  of  ruffians  sent  by  one  of  Takauji's 
generals  named  Ko  no  Moronawo.  But  the  gallant  Masatsura, 
meeting  the  scoundrels  on  the  road,  rescued  the  lady  and  escort- 
ed her  safely  to  the  Emi)eror's  court  at  Mt.  Yoshino.     The 

Emperor  was  so  pleased  with  Masa- 
,^^^ ^-tc^^r^hs        ^  tsiu-a's   exploit   that   he  told  him  to 

«^^i^^^^*"*5^  take  the  maiden  as  his  wife.  But 
Masatsura  politely  declined.  Perhaps 
lie  had  some  presentiment  that  he  w-ould  die  soon,  and  did  not 
wish  to  leave  her  a  widow.  As  for  the  girl,  although  she  did 
not  marry  him,  she  shaved  her  head  at  the  death  of  Masatsura, 
^nd  spent  the  rest  of  her  life  in  a  nunnery. 

■ — ^.^g^ ■' 




Kojirna  Takaiiori  tlie  devoted  loyalist,  with  Kusmioki  and 
Nitta,  fouglit  for  the  cause  of  the  Emperor  Go-Daigo  against 
the  Ho  jo,  and  later  against  the  Ashikaga.     When  the  Emperor 
Oo-Daigo  was  taken  prisoner  by  the    j|^su.vj5^w^  ^.^.\y^ 
Hojo  (in  1332),  and  w^as  being  convey-    ^y^^jT^ 
ed  to  the  island  of  Oki  as  an  exile,    ^JNd^^  Atn^^^ 
Kojirna — then   a  chieftain   in   Bingo    ^fj^Mfe^^^^' 
Province— determined   to  rescue   his    mU^m^^^S^''-  -y/'if^-'' 
unfortunate  Sovereign.     With  a  pick-    '^^^S^M^pi^^^SEZ^ 
ed  body  of  men  he  hastened  to  head      -^^^^^^•^"    '      '' 
them  off ;  but  the  enemy  hearing  of  this,  evaded  him  by  taking 
a  different  route.     Kojima  then  decided  to  follow  alone ;  and 
disguising  himself  as  a  farmer,  at  last  overtook  the  train  of  the 
royal  captive,  and  sought  for  an  opportunity  secretly  to  com- 
municate with  him.     13ut  owing  to  the  strict  watch  that  was 
kept,  he  had  no  chance  to  approach  the  Emi)eror,  so  one  night 
he  stealthily  entered  the  enclosure  of  the  house  where  Go-Daigo 
was  sleeping,  and  removing  a  portion  of  the  bark,  he  wrote  on 
a  cherry  tree  two  lines  of  a  Chinese  poem  expressing  deathless 
devotion.     Next  morning  Avlien  Go-Daigo  read  it,  his  heart  was 
greatly  cheered  by  this  token  of  lo^'alt}'. 

Ill  the  following  year,  when  Go-Daigo  escaped  from  the 
island  Jind  landed  on  the  coast  of  Hoki,  Kojima  was  one  of  the 
first  A\'lio  rallied  to  his  support ;  and  later,  with  the  faithful 
Nitta,  he  distinguished  himself  in  many  battles  against  the 
overwhelming  Ashikaga  forces.  And  when  at  last  Nitta  and 
Kusuiioki  were  slain,  and  all  hope  had  to  be  abandoned,  Kojima 
shaved  his  head  and  entered  retirement  in  some  place  that  is 



Asliikaga  Yosliimitsu,  the  third  of  the  Ashikaga  Shognns, 
was  a  grandson  of  Takauji.  When  he  succeeded  his  father  Yo- 
shimori  as  Shogun  (in  1368),  he  was  only  eleven  years  old  ;  but 
he  had  an  excellent  guardian  named  HosokaAva  Yoriynki  who 
helped  him  in  every  way.  Yosliimitsu,  in  spite  of  many  faults 
in  his  character,  was  a  man  of  uncommon  ability,  and  during 
his  administration  the  Asliikaga  Shogunate  reached  the  summit 
of  its  power  and  influence. 

His  chief  merit  was  the  settlement  of  the  long  discord  in  the 
Imperial  dynasties.  The  Southern  D^'nast}^,  descended  from 
the  Emperor  Go-Daigo,  had  by  this  time  greatly  declined  in 
power ;  but  still  claimed  its  legitimacy  against  the  Northern 
Dynasty  supported  by  the  Shogimate.  Yosliimitsu  determined 
to  make  an  end  of  this,  and  sent  armies  to  crush  the  supporters 
of  the  Southern  Court.  And  when  this  was  accomplished,  he 
induced  the  Southern  Emperor,  Go-Kameyama,  to  hand  over  to 
the  Emperor  Go-Komatsu  of  the  Northern 
Dynasty,  the  tliree  Sacred  Treasures — the 
insignia  of  the  ruling  Emperor  of  Japan. 
This  happened  just  fifty-seven  years  after 
the  escape  from  Kyoto  of  the  Emperor  Go- 

Y^oshimitsu  did  good  service  as  a  patron 
of  foreign  commerce ;  but  his  luxurious 
temperament  gradually  got  the  better  of 
him.  He  retired  in  1393,  in  favour  of  his  son  Yoshimochi,  and 
tmtil  his  death  in  1408,  he  lived  an  epicurean  life  in  his  gor- 
geous palace  called  Kinkakuji  (lit.  "  golden  pavilion  "},  which 
still  stands,  and  is  one  of  the  principal  sights  of  Kyoto. 





Of  the  many  schools  of  painting  that  have  appeared  in  Japan, 
the  most  important  was  midoubtedly  the  Kano  school.     The 
fomider  of  this  school,  Kano  Masanobu,  lived  about  four  hund- 
red and  fifty  years  ago,   and  first  became 
famous  by  making  pictures  for  the  Sho- 
gun  Yoshimasa  who  was  a  great  patron 
of  fine  arts.     His  son  Motonobu  was  still 
better,  and  he  and  Sesshii  are  considered 
the  two  greatest  masters  of  the  Ashikaga 
age.     In  fact,  for  a  time  the  Kano  family 
almost  monopolized  the  artistic  world  of 

The  fifth  of  the  family,  named  Yetoku, 
was  specially  patronized  by  Nobunaga 
and  Hideyoshi ;  and  his  grandson,  named 

Tanyu,  served  the  Tokugawa  Shogunate  as  master  of  painting. 
Tanyii  studied  assiduously  the  masterpieces  of  Japanese  and 
Chinese  painting,  and  finally  originated  a  style  of  his  own  that 
surpassed  almost  all  in  taste  and  elegance.  He  was  certainly 
the  greatest  painter  of  the  Tokugawa  age.  He  died  in  1674  at 
the  age  of  seventy-tlu:ee. 

Tanyu's  two  brothers  Naonobu  and  Yasunobu,  and  his  adopt- 
ed son  Masunobu  were  also  distinguished  artists,  and  each 
founded  a  school  of  his  own.  Among  their  followers,  however, 
no  specially  great  painter  appeared  until  the  present  Meiji  era, 
when  Kano  Hogai  and  Hashimoto  Gaho  added  great  lustre  to 
the  Kano  school.     Both  of  these  masters  died  quite  recently. 







Kano  Motonobu,  the  great  artist,  was  very  inucli  of  a  Bolie- 
mian.  One  day,  in  his  penniless  wanderings,  he  came  to  a 
temple  named  Ikkoku-ji  at  Sakai  near  Osaka,  and  asked  to  be 
allowed  to  stay  there  for  a  time.  The  head 
priest  consented  to  this,  but  asked  him  in 
return  to  paint  a  picture.  After  two  or  three 
years,  someone  complained  to  the  head  priest 
that  the  artist  was  idling  away  his  time  doing 
nothing.  But  the  old  priest  only  smiled.  At 
last  one  night  some  of  the  young  priests 
peeped  through  the  shoji  into  the  artist's  \  \ 
room.  They  found  him  dancing  nearly  \^ 
naked  before  a  lamp — flinging  his  arms  / 
about,  and  watching  his  moving  shadow 
on  a  screen.  They  went  and  told  the  head 
priest  that  the  artist  had  gone  mad ;  but  the 
old  man  only  smiled  again. 

A  few  days  later,  the  artist  announced  that 
his  picture  was  completed, — so  they  all  went 
to  his  room.  There  were  twenty-five  cranes 
painted  on  a  screen  ;  and  the  sense  of  life-like 
movement  that  he  had  given  them  filled  every- 
one with  wonder  and  admiration.  Next  day 
the  artist  left  the  temple  and  continued  his 
wanderings.  About  three  weeks  later  at  a 
place  in  the  Hakone  mountains  about  two 
hundred  miles  from  the  temple,  he  came  upon 
a  tree  very  like  the  one  he  had  painted  with 
the  cranes  on  the  screen.  But  this  tree  had  an 
extra  branch  that  the  artist  considered  an  im- 
provement. 80  he  tramped  all  the  way  back 
to  the  temple ;  and  while  the  priests  were  at 
prayers,  he  silently  entered  his  old  room,  and 
added    another  ^"^  < 

branch   to   the  •■'(T^ 

picture.     Then  CVC&t  ^ 

again  he  disap-     — ■;^'^^'^^^^±}^'7<~=^^^y<  ~^\o     a^ 

peared.  ^ 








Sessliu  was  the  greatest  landscape  painter  that  has  ever  ap- 
peared in  Japan.  He  was  born  in  the  beginning  of  the  fifteenth 
century,  and  when  quite  young  he  entered  a  Buddhist  temple 
and  became  a  priest. 

When  about  forty  years  old,  he  went 
to  China  for  further  study  of  the  art  he 
so  much  loved ;  but  in  the  whole  of  China 
he  could  not  find  a  master  that  satisfied 
him.  He  was,  however,  greatly  pleased 
with  the  scenery  of  China,  and  made  in- 
numerable sketches.  His  landscape 
pictures  are  quite  unique,  and  surpass  all 
others  in  their  pmre  taste  and  rich  varie- 
ty, as  well  as  in  their  simple  yet  con- 
summate  workmanship.      His   pictures 

were  greatly  admired  by  the  Cliinese.  Even  the  Emperor 
heard  of  his  fame,  and  asked  him  to  paint  a  landscape  on  the 
wall  of  a  room  in  the  palace.  After  a  stay  of  five  jesirs  in 
China,  he  returned  home  (in  1463),  and  lived  for  many  years  in 
a  Buddhist  temple  called  Unkoku-ji  in  Yamaguchi  Province ; 
and  afterwards  in  the  province  of  Iwami.  He  died  in  1506,  at 
the  age  of  eighty-seven. 

Although  Sesshii  was  such  a  great  painter,  he  lived  the  life 
of  a  priest  to  the  end,  and  cared  nothing  for  worldly  fame  or 
monetary  gain.  When  the  Shogun  Yoshimasa  offered  him  a 
high  position  as  official  painter,  he  thanked  him  but  declined, 
and  recommended  Kano  Masanobu,  who  became  the  founder  of 
the  influential  Kano  School  (see  page  103). 




FOUNDERS  OF  l\IO  AND  A'K(?G£/1/ 

The  classic  drama  called  No  originated  with  the  Kagura,  or 
sacred  dance,  and  developed  to  its  present  form  in  the  Ashikaga 
era,  under  the  patronage  of  the  Shognn  Yoshimitsu.  The 
founders  were  named  Kwan-ami  and  his  son  Sei-ami.  The 
successive  Shoguns  of  the  Ashikaga  family  were  all  enthusiastic 
patrons  of  No,  and  it  came  to  be  considered  indispensable  on 
ceremonial  and  festive  occasions.  In  the  course  of  half  a 
century  or  so,  five  different  schools  of  No  appeared,  each  having 
its  own  specialty. 

Over  two  hundred  of  these  No  dramas  remain,  of  which  the 
most  notable  are :  Takasago  (the  name  of  a  place),  Hagoromo 
("The  Robe  of  Feathers  "),    Yuya  (a  lady's  name),  Matsukaze 
("  The  Wind  in  the  Pine  Trees  "),   Yamauha  ("  The  Witch  "), 
HacJd  no   Ki  ("  The  Tree  in  a  Pot  "j,  etc.,  etc. 
These  compositions  were  written  mainly  by  Bud- 
dhist priests  whose  names  are  not  recorded ;  and 
are  very  simple  in  construction — only  two  or  tlu'ee 
persons  appearing  on  the  stage. 

Performers  of  No  were  held  in  great  esteem,  and 
such  famous  men  as  Hideyoshi  and  leyasu  often 
took  part  in  these  plays.     During  the  Tokugawa 
era,  every  Daimyo  had  a  No  stage  in  his  residence ; 
but  at  last,  owing  to  political  and  social  disturbances,, 
it  came  to  be  neglected  until  about  twenty  years 
ago,  when  a  revival  took  place.     At  present  one  can 
see  No  performances  frequently  in  Tokyo  and  in 
many  other  large  cities. 
The  Kybgen  is  a  kind  of  farce,  usually  accompanying  the  No- 
plays  as  a  mirth-provoking  contrast.     There  are  three   well- 
known  schools  of  Kybgen  called  Okm-a,  Izumi,  and  Sagi. 




The  art  of  sword  making  iu  Japan  reached  its  highest  excel- 
lence alx)ut  six  hundred  years  ago.  And  among  the  many  ex- 
pert sword-smiths  of  the  feudal  da^^s,  Masamune  and  Muramasa 
were  considered  to  be  the  greatest  masters  of 
the  art. 

About  their  personal  career  nothing 
is  definitely  known,  bej'ond  the  fact 
that  Masamune  lived  in  Kamakura, 
and  Muramasa  in  Kuwana. 

But  the  swords  they  made  stiU  remain ;  and  in  their  sharpness 
and  tempering  they  are  far  superior  to  anything  that  is  made 
at  the  present  day. 

No  doubt  it  was  the  manner  of  their  making  that  accounts  for 
this.  For  in  the  old  days  the  making  of  swords  was  done  by 
craftsmen  who  toiled  at  the  forge  with  other  motives  and  ideals 
than  those  of  the  workmen  of  to-day,  and  it  may  be  that  some- 
thing of  themselves  was  wrought  into  the  fibre  of  their  matcliless 
blades.  For  not  merely  skill  of  eye  and  hand  -svas  considered 
needful ;  but  also  sterling  character  and  manly  worth.  And  so 
it  came  about  that  such  work  was  regarded  almost  in  the  light 
of  a  religious  ceremony ;  and  the  smith  would  purify  himself 
before  approaching  his  honoured  task. 

No  wonder  that  such  swords  were  gi-eatly  valued.  In  fact,  a 
Samurai  would  sometimes  give  all  his  fortime  for  a  single 
sword  ;  and  families  even  to-day  still  hold  as  priceless  heirlooms 
their  Masamune  blades. 





Ikkyu,  the  famous  priest,  was  a  man  of  remarkable  w  it,  and 
very  many  stories  are  told  of  Lis  quaint  sayings  and  doings. 
He  lived  in  the  middle  of  the  Ashikaga  era,  about  four  himdred 
and  fifty  years  ago,  and  was  a  son  of  the  Emperor  Go-Komatsu. 
When  quite  young  he  was  sent  to  a  great  Buddhist  temple  of 
the  Zen  sect  called  Daitokuji,  which  still  stands  in  the  subm*bs 
of  Kyoto.  Later  on  he  became  the  head  priest  of  this  temple, 
and  his  skill  in  argument  was  considered  to  be  without  parallel 
even  among  priests  of  the  Zen  sect,  who  are  usually  very  strong 

One  day  when  he  was  travelling  in  the  country,  a  young  man 
whose  father  had  just  died  asked  Ikkyii  to  perform  the  ceremony 
called  indo  (^j^),  w^hich  is  supposed  to  guide  the  soul  of  the 
dead  to  the  other  world.  Ikkyu  was  shown  into  the  room 
where  the  open  cofiin  was  placed,  and  then  he  told  the  young 
man  to  bring  a  hammer  and  strike  the  body  on  the  head.  The 
yoimg  man  did  as  he  was  directed. 

"  Strike  harder,"  said  Ikkyu  each  time  the 
yomig  man  struck,— until  at  last  he  struck  so 
hard  that  he  actually  made  a  hole  in  the  head. 
"  Well,  what  shall  I  do  now  ?  " 
enquired   the   astonished   young 

"  What  did  your  father  say?  " 
asked  Ikkyu. 
"  He  said  nothing,"  said  the  young  man.    "  How  could  he  say 
anything?  He  is  dead." 

"  If  you  are  satisfied  that  he  is  dead,  that's  all  there  is  about 
it,"  replied  Ikkyu.  "  Neither  you  nor  I  can  do  anything  more 
for  him." 



Tlie  famous  fencing  masters  of  the  feudal  days  were  most  of 
them  men  of  high  culture,  very  polite  in  manner  and  dignified 
in  bearing.     In  a  word,  they  were  gentlemen  before  experts ; 
and  were   models  for  the  Samurai 
class — of  which  in  fact,  they  formed 
the  backbone.     Many  of  them  were 
students  of  Zen  (see  page  211) ;  and 
this  aided  not  only  in  strengthening 
the  mind  and  will,  but  also  in  giving 
them   that  calmness  in   emergency 
and  general  poise  for  which  they  were  particularly  noted. 

The  most  famous  fencers  of  the  Ashikaga  era  were  Miyamoto 
Musashi,  Yagyu  Muneyoshi,  and  Tsukahara  Bokuden  who  be- 
came a  teacher  of  the  Ashikaga  Shoguns.  During  the  Toku- 
gawa  era  fencing  was  much  cultivated.  In  fact,  this  may  be 
called  the  golden  age  of  fencers :  for  they  were  held  in  great 
respect  and  given  high  positions.  And  as  fencing  was  an  in- 
disi^ensable  accomplishment  for  Samurai,  there  was  a  continual 
demand  for  expert  teachers  :  so  naturally  many  masters  of  the 
art  appeared,  and  a  number  of  different  schools  grew  up, — each 
with  some  specialty.  The  most  famous  of  these  schools  was 
called  the  Shinkagc-ryu^  founded  by  Yagyu  Miisuyoslii  who 
taught  the  art  to  several  of  the  Shoguns. 

Since  the  Restoration,  however,  fencing  has  greatly  declined, 
though  it  is  still  practised  in  the  Army  and  Navy,  and  also 
among  students  and  ix)licemen. 








Tsukawara  Bokuden,  the  great  fencer,  was  once  crossing  Lake 
Biwa  in  a  ferry-boat  with  several  other  passengers.  One  of 
these  was  an  unusually  large  and  ferocious  looking  Samurai, 
who  talked  very  big  about  his  prowess  as  a  fencer.  He 
finally  turned  on  Bokuden  and  remarked  patronizingly,  "  I  see 
you're  a  Samurai,  so  I  suppose  you  know  something  about 
fencing.  What  school  do  you  belong  to  ?  "  Bokuden  mildly 
replied,  "  I've  learned  a  little  ;  but  I  belong  to  the  *  free  hand 
school '  (muteJcatsuryu).  I  don't  need  to  use  my  sword.  I 
overcome  my  opponents  with  my  hands  only." 

"  You  do,  eh,"  sneered  the  big  Samurai ;  ''  well,  I  never  heard 
of  your  school,  but  suppose  we  try  a  bout  of  it  right  here  ?  " 

"  We'd  better  fight  over  there,"  replied  Bokuden,  pointing  to 
a  small  islet  in  the  middle  of  the  lake.  The  tall  Samurai 
agreed  to  this,  and  gave  an  order  to  the  boatman ;  and  when 
the  boat  came  within  a  few  yards  of  the  islet,  he  impatiently 
sprang  ashore.  Then  Bokuden  picked  up 
a  long  boat  pole,  and  everyone  supposed  he 
was  going  to  pole-jump  after  him.  But 
instead  of  this  he  calmly  shoved  off,  and 
left  the  big  fellow  stranded  on  the  islet 
shore.  '*  Come  back,  you  coward,  come 
back  !  "  yelled  the  furious  Samurai  when  he 
saw  what  was  done. 

"Not  at  all,"  replied  the  master  calmly. 
"  I  told  you  I  belonged  to  the  free  hand  school.  And  as  you 
see,  it  is  quite  unnecessary  for  me  to  use  my  sword." 





111  the  latter  half  of  the  Ashikaga  age,  about  four  hund- 
red years  ago,  Japan  was  divided  into  hundreds  of  small 
states  governed  by  petty  lords  who  were  constantly  fighting 
among  themselves;  for  the  Emperor  and  the 
Shogun  had  long  lost  the  power  to  control 
them.  This  was  the  darkest  age  in  the  history 
of  Japan ;  but  here  and  there  in  the  darkness 
the  light  of  true  Busliidb  shone  out. 

One  of  these  examples  of  chivaby  may  be 
found  in  the  action  of  Uesugi  Kensin,  the  lord 
of  Echigo.  At  that  time  the  lord  of  Kai 
Province  was  Takeda  Shingen,  and  he  was 
<ionsidered  to  be  the  best  military  tactician  of 
the  day.  Uesugi  Kenshin  and  he  were  ene- 
mies; and  many  fierce  battles  were  fought 
between  these  two  clans.  The 
most  famous  of  these  fights  was 
the  battle  of  Kawanaka-jima  (1558), 
^nd  on  that  occasion  Uesugi  dashed  ahead  of  his  followers, 
and  broke  into  the  headquarters  of  his  enemy  Takeda,  bent 
on  engaging  him  in  single  combat.  But  he  was  able  to  inflict 
only  a  slight  wound  on  his  opponent,  and  the  duel  went  on 
until  the  end  of  their  lives. 

Though  they  were  so  relentless  in  fighting,  they  held  each 
other  in  much  respect.  And  Uesugi  especially  was  very 
generous  towards  his  enemy.  To  give  an  example  of  this: 
owing  to  the  inland  position  of  Kai  Province,  the  inhabitants 
were  suffering  greatly  from  want  of  salt.  Uesugi,  hearing  of 
this,  sent  to  his  enemy  a  large  amount  of  salt  sufficient  to 
supply  the  need  of  the  people. 


1 8 




Oda  Nobunaga  will  always  be  remembered  as  the  first  of 
the  great  trio  that  appeared  about  three  hmidred  and  fifty 
years  ago  and  rescued  Japan  from  utter  anarchy.  The 
Shoguns  of  the  Ashikaga  family  had  long  since  lost  control 
of  the  provincial  lords,  and  w^ere  quite  powerless  to  check 
their  lawless  and  bloody  conflicts.  It  was  Nobunaga  who 
first  partially  succeeded  in  bringing  them  under  subjection — 
thus  preparing  the  way  for  Taiko  Hideyoshi.  And  Hideyoshi 
in  turn  made  it  possible  for  Tokugaw^a  leyasu  to  establish 
peace  that  lasted  practically  till  the  dawn  of  the  present  Meiji 


At  first  Oda  Nobunaga  was  only  a  petty  lord  in  the  pro- 
vince of  Owari,  and  was  continually  threatened  by  such  power- 
ful lords  as  Takeda,  Hojo,  Imagawa  and  many  others.  Ima- 
gawa  was  the  first  of  these  to  open  hostilities  against  him, 
when  with  about  twenty  thousand  followers  he  broke  into 
Owari  Province  (in  1560),  and  attacked  the  castle  at  Kiyosu 
where  Nobunaga  was  staying  supported  by  only  three  thou- 
sand men.  But  Nobunaga,  taking 
advantage  of  a  terrific  thunderstorm, 
made  a  sortie  from  the  castle  with 
his  followers ;  and  taking  the  enemy 
unawares,  inflicted  a  crushing  defeat 
in  which  Imagawa  himself  was 

From  this  time  Nobunaga's  power  increased  year  by  year, 
until,  after  about  twenty  years  of  fighting,  he  was  master  of 
about  twenty-eight  provinces,  and  the  most  powerful  leader 
in  Japan.  But  he  did  not  live  to  see  the  consummation  of 
his  great  project,  for  at  the  age  of  forty-nine  he  was  assassi- 
nated by  Akechi  Mitsuhide,  in  1582. 



Alexander,  Caesar,  Napoleon  and  Hideyoshi  belong  to  the 
same  type  of  conqueror.  Their  exploits  and  success  differed 
according  to  the  age  and  the  country  in  which  they  were  born ; 

but  as  military  men  the}^  w^ere  per- 
haps equally  remarkable. 

Hide^^oshi  was  the  son  of  a  poor 
farmer   near   Nagoya;  and  through 
sheer   merit  he   became   chief   lord 
and  military  leader  in  Japan.     As 
in     the     case    of    Napoleon,    after 
making  himself  master  of  the  situa- 
tion at  home,  he  aimed  to  conquer  not  only  Korea  but  also 
China  and  India.     He  organized  a  large  army  for  the  invasion 
of  Korea  (in   151)2);  but  as   he  was  then  rather  old,  he  was 
not  able  to  lead  the  army  himself. 

This  invading  army  won  many  battles,  and  drove  back 
the  Chinese  army  that  came  to  help  the  Koreans.  Finally, 
however,  owing  to  the  death  of  Hideyoshi  (in  1598),  the  army 
was  connx3lled  to  return  to  Japan  without  accomplishing  any- 

In  character  Hideyoshi  w^as  generous,  and  remarkably 
broad-minded.  At  first  he  was  very  tolerant  of  the  Jesuits 
who  came  to  spread  Christianity  in  Japan,  but  afterwards  he 
strongly  opposed  them  on  accomit  of  their  political  intrigues. 
He  died  about  315  years  ago,  at  the  age  of  sixty,  and  left 
one  son,  named  Hideyori.  The  son,  however,  was  much 
inferior  to  his  father;  and  leyasu  soon  grasped  the  reins  of 
jx)wer  left  in  the  feeble  hands  of  Hideyori,  and  became  the 
first  of  the  great  Tokugawa  Shogims. 






Many  stories  are  told  about  the  quick  wit  and  resource- 
fulness of  Hideyoslii,  and  tliis  one  is  a  typical  example.  When 
the  news  of  Oda  Nobunaga's  assassination  by  Akechi  Mitsuhide 
reached  Hideyoslii,  he  at  once  started  for  Kyoto  to  deal  with 
the  traitor.  In  fact,  he  was  so  eager  to  get  there  that  he 
hurried  on  in  advance  of  his  army,  and  without  even  a  body- 
guard near  him. 

In  the  meantime  the  crafty  Akechi,  foreseeing  this  move, 
sent  a  body  of  swordsmen  to  assassinate  him  while  on  his 
way.  And  when  Hideyoslii  arrived  at  Nishinomiya,  they  rush- 
ed out  from  their  hiding  place  to  attack  him.  But  Hideyo- 
slii, being  a  very  small  man  and  without  any  knowledge  of 
swordsmanship,  naturally  had  no  chance  whatever  against 
these  ruffians.  So  he  quickly  turned  his  horse  into  a  narrow 
path  between  the  ricefields  leading  to  a  small  Buddhist  temple ; 
and  when  he  got  some  distance  along  the  path,  he  suddenly 
dismounted,  and  turning  his  horse  towards  his  pursuers,  gave 
the  animal  a  sharp  prod  from  behind  that  sent  him  galloping 
wildly  forward  and  scattered  the  swordsmen  into  the  deep  mud 

of  the  ricefield. 

While  the  pursuers  were  flounder- 
ing in  the  mud,  Hideyoshi  arrived 
at  the  temple ;  and  finding  the  priests 
in  a  big  common  bath  tub,  he  hastily 
told  them  who  he  was,  and  stripping 
off  his  clothes,  jumped  into  the  bath 
along  with  them.  After  a  few  minutes  the  muddy  assassins 
came  along ;  but  seeing  only  a  bath  full  of  priests,  they  hurried 
on  in  pursuit  of  the  fugitive.  And  when,  half  an  hour  later,  the 
anxious  body-guards  arrived,  they  were  greatly  astonished  as 
well  as  amused  to  find  their  chief  dressed  in  the  robes  of  a 
priest,  and  refreshed  with  a  nice  hot  bath  after  his  fatiguing 


KATO  KIYOMASA  IN  KOREA        (see  page  123). 
Looking  towards  the  mountains  of  home  beyond  the  Sea. 



Kato  Kiyomasa  was  a  cousin  of  Hideyoshi,  and  both  were 
born  in  tlie  same  village  near  Nagoya.  Kato  was  a  man  of 
immense  size  and  great  bravery ;  and  in  most  of  the  battles 
fought  by  Hideyoshi  he  acted  as  a 
body-guard,  and  several  times  saved 
Hidej^oshi's  life. 

When  Hideyoshi  sent  a  large  force  to 
invade  Korea,  Kato  was  made  commander 
of  one   of  the   two   armies.     He  led  his 
army   along   the  eastern   sea-coast;    and 
after  many  successful  battles, 
succeeded  in  taking  the  capi-     ^^ 
tal,  and  capturing  two  sons  of 
the    Korean   king.     He   then 
continued    his    rapid    march, 
driving     the    enemy    to    the 

northern  extremity  of  the  peninsula.  And  although  he  was 
sometimes  cut  off  from  the  other  generals  who  followed  him,, 
he  struck  such  terror  into  the  hearts  of  the  enemy  that  they 
feared  to  attack  him.  Even  now  his  name  is  well  remembered 
in  Korea,  and  naughty  children  are  told  that  Kato  will  come 
for  them  if  they  don't  be  good. 

After  the  Korean  war,  Kato  was  made  the  Daimyo  of  Higo 
Province  and  received  750,000  koku  of  rice.  He  built  a 
strong  castle  in  Kumamoto  which  still  stands.  In  fact,  it  was 
in  this  castle  that  General  Tani  and  his  men  withstood  the 
siege  of  the  Satsuma  rebels  in  1877.  Kato  was  always  loyal 
to  Hideyoshi,  and  supported  him  and  his  family  in  every  way. 
It  was  not  until  after  tlie  death  of  Kato,  in  1611,  that  the 
cautious  leyasu  dared  to  overthrow  Hideyori,  the  son  of. 







^^.-^  0 

Sorori  Sliinzaemon  was  a  kind  of  clown  in  the  service  6i 
the  great  Taiko  Hidejoshi;  and  was  a  great  favourite  on 
accoimt  of  his  quick  wit  and  unfailing  good  humour.  The 
number  of  witty  say- 
ings and  doings  attri- 
buted to  Sorori  is  very 
large ;  but  as  the  former 
are  mostly  full  of  puns, 
they  cannot  be  properly 
translated.  One  typical 
example  will  show  the 
kind  of  escapades  for  which  Sorori  w^as  famous. 

Hideyoshi,  in  a  mood  of  after-dinner  good  humour,  once 
said  to  his  attendants  that  he  would  give  them  whatever 
they  wanted.  The  attendants  one  after  another  stated  their 
wishes,  and  were  given  swords,  jewels,  gold  coins,  etc.,  accord- 
ing to  their  desires.  When  Scrori's  turn  came,  he  said 
modestly  that  he  wanted  just  two  paper  bags  of  rice.  Hide- 
yoshi promised  he  should  certainly  have  them,  and  laughed  at 
^^^„„.,,^^  him  for  requesting  such  a  trifling  thing. 

Sorori   thanked  him  simply,  and  quietly 
withdrew.     A  couple  of  hours  later,  how- 
ever, he  came  back  attended  by  a  hundred 
#1%      /f il!^>^^-''  men  carrying  two  enormous  paper  bags. 
^^^'/'^i!/  /t  "These  are  the  paper  bags,  sir,"  said 

Sorori,  "and  I  w^ant  to  have  them  filled 
with  rice  according  to  Your  Excellency's  promise."  The  story 
says  that  the  bags  were  large  enough  to  cover  two  immense 
storehouses !  ^ 




leyasu,  the  fii'st  of  the  Tokugawa  Shoguus,  was  origiuall}' 
a  petty  lord  in  the  province  of  Mikawa.  From  his  youth  he 
took  part  in  many  battles,  chiefly  as  a  faitliful  ally  of  Oda 
Nobunaga,  whose  power  was  then  growing 
ver}-  rapidly ;  and  gradually  his  rare  abilities 
Ijegan  to  be  widely  recognized.  Yet  he  had 
to  remain  many  years  in  a  subordinate  posi- 
tion: for  when  Nobunaga  was  killed,  there 
remained  Hideyoshi,  his  senior  in  rank  as  well 
as  in  age.  But  when  Hideyoshi  died  (in  1598), 
leyasu  became  the  most  powerful  general  in 
Japan.  At  this  time  he  Avas  nearly  sixty  years 
old,  and  four  3'ears  later  (in  lt)03)  he  assumed 
the  title  of  Sliogun. 

His  rare  capacity  as  a  statesman  and  law- 
maker was  chiefly  shown  in  his  organization 
of  the  Tokugawa  Shoganate  in  Yedo.  For  imlike  Hide3'oshi 
he  knew  how  to  secure  and  perpetuate  the  advantages  gained 
by  conquest.  But  his  chief  desire  was  to^restore  peace  to  the 
empire ;  and  his  government  so  far  succeeded  in  this  that  for 
about  two  hundred  and  fifty  yeai-s,.  almost  unbroken  peace 

In  his  old  age  he  was  a  great  patron  of  scholars.  He 
caused  the  Confucian  classics  to  be  printed,  and  encoiu'aged 
the  Daimyos  to  establish  schools  in  1  their  territories.  In  fact 
the  great  advance  of  learning  in  the  Tokugawa  era  was  chiefly 
due  to  his  wise  and  timel}'  attention. 

At  the  age  of  sixty-three  he  retired  from  the  office  of 
Sliogun  in  favour  of  his  son  Hidetada,  though  actually  retain- 
ing much  power  in  his  own  hands.  Twelve  years  later  he  died 
at  Sumpu  (now  Shizuoka)  in  IGIG. 




^^  Okubo  Hikozaemon  was  a  Hatamoto  wlio  served  in  succes- 

*o         sion  the  first  three  of  the  Tokugawa  Shoguns.     He  was  granted 
bj  the  Shogun  the  peculiar  privilege  of  saying  whatever  he 
^^         liked  to  men  of  any  rank ;  and  perhaps  in  consequence  of  this, 
J  he  became  very  influential.     In  character  he  was  thoroughly 

^^         honest  and  loyal,  but  very  eccentric,  and  with  a  rich  vein  of 
^SSt         dry  humour.     Many  amusing  anecdotes   are   told  about  him, 

and  the  following  is  a  typical  example. 
■  J  leyasu  once  gave  a  dinner  to  some  Daimyos  at  w^hich  the 

special  and  highly-prized  dish  was  made  of  the  flesh  of  crane. 
Okubo  was  also  invited  to  partake  of  this  delicacy,  and  after 
dinner  leyasu  asked  him  how  he  liked  it. 

"It  was  not  at  all  bad,"  replied  Okubo,  "but  then,  you 
know,  I'm  used  to  it :  I  have  it  nearly  every  day  !  " 

leyasu  was  considerably  surprised  to  hear  this,  as  he  himself 
very  rarely  had  an  opportunity  to  eat  it,  so  he  said  to 
Okubo:  "If  you  have  it  so  often,  you  might  let  me  have 
a  share  of  it  sometimes." 

"Willingly,"     replied      Okubo, 
"I'll   bring   you  a  large   quantity 
of  it  to-morrow."     On  the  next  day 
Okubo    called    at     the     Shogun's 
palace,  and  presented  leyasu  with 
a  heap  of  greens  saying :  "  This  is 
what  I  had  for  dinner  here  yester- 
day.    I  could  not  find  a  morsel  of 
crane  in  the  dish  that  was  set  before  me  ;  but  perhaps  you  call 
this  stuff  crane  in  some  special  way."     leyasu  laughed  heartily 
as  he  accepted  the  present ;  but  he  told  his  servants  to  be  more 
careful  in  future, — especially  when  serving  Mr.  Okubo ! 



. »»    •  A  »  \ 




Date  Masamune,  the  famous  Daimyo  of  Sendai,  was  born  in 
tlie  latter  part  of  the  Ashikaga  age  (in  1567).  By  the  time  that 
he  was  twenty-four  years  old,  he  had  abeady  become  one  of  the 
most  powerful  military  leaders  in  the  north- 
eastern part  of  Japan.  If  he  had  been 
born  ten  or  twenty  years  earlier,  his  power 
would  have  grown  much  greater ;  but  as  it 
was,  he  found  a  rival  more  powerful  than 
himself  in  the  person  of  the  great  Taiko 
Hideyoshi,  who  had  already  made  himself 
master  of  the  greater  part  of  Japan.  Date 
therefore  wisely  decided  to  cast  in  his  lot 
with  Hideyoshi ;  and  supported  him,  and 
afterwards  lyeyasu  when  the  latter  established  the  Shogunate 
in  Yedo.  In  return  for  this,  Date  was  made  one  of  the  greatest 
Daimyos  in  the  land,  with  a  revenue  of  over  800,000  koku  of 

The  name  of  Date  will  always  be  associated  with  the  early 
history  of  Christianity  in  Japan.  For  it  was  he  who  sent  an 
ambassador  named  Hashikura  to  the  Pope  of  Home  in  1613. 
His  Holiness  was  much  pleased  to  receive  Date's  invitation  for 
missionaries  to  be  sent  to  his  domain,  and  called  Date  "  The 
future  defender  of  the  faith  in  Japan."  But  just  what  Date 
had  in  view  in  extending  this  invitation  is  an  open  question. 
Anyhow,  his  attitude  towards  Christianity  considerally  changed 
in  later  years.  And  as  for  Hashikura,  when  he  returned  home 
in  1620 — after  seven  years  spent  in  Christian  lands — he  declar- 
ed that  Christianity  was  only  "  a  vain  show." 





On  the  top  of  a  hill  about  a  mile  from  Yokosuka  station  may 
be  found  the  tomb  of  William  Adams,  the  first  Englishman 
that  ever  came  to  Japan.  The  tomb  is  called  "  Anjinzuka," 
and  the  hill  has  lately  been  made  into  a  kind  of  park. 

William  Adams  was  born  at  Gillingham  in  the  comity  of 
Kent,  and  was  educated  as  a  sailor.  At  the  age  of  thirty-six 
he  was  engaged  as  chief  pilot  to  the  Dutch  fleet  of  the  East 
India  Company,  and  sailed  for  India  by  way  of  the  Straits  of 
Magellan.  On  the  way,  the  fleet  met  with  every  kind  of  hard- 
ship and  peril,  and  only  one  shij^  survived.  Even  that  ship  was 
miserably  damaged,  and  was  at  last  driven  to  the  province  of 
Bungo  in  Kyiishu.  Only  tlu*ee  of  the  crew  were  able  to  walk 
— being  utterly  exhausted  ;  and  one  of  these  tlu-ee  was  William 
Adams.  This  happened  in  the  year  1600 — just  three  hundred 
and  ten  years  ago. 

Adams  was  an  honest,  straightforward 
man  with  some  scientific  knowledge ; 
and  the  first  Shogun,  Tokugawa  lyeya- 
su,  much  admired  him.  He  was  of  great 
service  to  Japan  as  a  ship-builder,  also 
as  a  teacher  of  mathematics,  astronomy 
etc.,  and  also  as  general  adviser  for 
foreign  affairs  concerning  trade  matters 
and  such  things.  In  acknowledgment 
of  his  services,  lyeyasu  appointed  him 
Lord  of  Hemi  near  Yokosuka,  and 
allowed  him  yearly  two  hundred  and 
fifty  Icoku  of  rice.  Adams  married  a  Japanese  woman,  and  took 
the  name  of  Miura  Anjin.  They  had  two  children.  When 
about  fifty  years  old  Adams  died,  much  honoured  and  regretted. 



Nakae  Toju,  generally  known  as  the  Sage  of  Omi,  was  born 
in  1608,  the  same  year  as  Milton.  From  his  early  youth  he 
devoted  himself  to  study  of  the  Chinese  classics,  always  trying 
to  apply  their  teachings  in  his  own  life. 
At  first  he  studied  mainly  what  is  known  as 
'the  Shushi  school  of  Chinese  thought,  which 
was  especially  encouraged  for  political 
pm-poses  by  the  Tokugawa  rulers  of  that 
<day;  but  in  his  thirty-seventh  year,  he 
embraced  the  teachings  of  the  Yomei  school 
which  unified  his  views,  and  threw  a  flood 
•of  light  on  the  problems  that  so  deeply 
interested  him.  These  teachings  of  O-Yo- 
mei  (in  Chinese,  Wang- Yang-Ming)  had  great  influence  on  Na- 
kae Toju's  character  and  work  from  this  time  onwards.  In 
fact,  mainly  through  him,  this  good  influence  extended  to  many 
scholars  and  thinkers  of  later  days ;  and  undoubtedly  did  a 
good  deal  towards  bringing  about  the  Restoration  in  Japan. 
For  the  teachings  of  O -Yomei  stood  for  the  right  of  protest  and 
free  inquiry ;  whereas  the  teachings  of  Shushi  tended  rather  to 
support  the  government  however  bad  it  might  be. 

Nakae  Toju  spent  most  of  his  life  in  teaching,  and  making 
commentaries  on  the  great  classics,  and  by  his  character  and 
work  exercised  a  most  beneficent  influence  on  Japanese  thought. 
He  was  greatly  respected  and  beloved  by  all  who  knew  him,  as 
well  as  by  his  many  disciples.  He  died  of  asthma  in  1618,  and 
the  house  in  which  he  lived  became  a  kind  of  shrine  to  the  vil- 
lagers of  Omi  who  reverenced  him  almost  as  a  god. 






One  night  when  Nakae  Toju  was  returning  home  very  late, 
he  was  suddenly  attacked  by  highwaymen  who  demanded  his 
money  and  threatened  to  kill  him  if  he  refused.  But  the  sage 
calmly  told  them  to  wait  for  a  few  minutes.  "  This  is  quite  a 
new  question  to  me,"  he  said.  "  I  must  consider  a  little  before 
making  my  decision."  So  while  he  stood  there  deep  in  medita- 
tion, the  robbers  waited  with  drawn  swords  in  their  hands.  At 
last  the  sage  turned  to  them  and  said,  "  I  can't  find  any  reason 
why  I  should  give  you  my  money.  If  I  don't  do  so,  you  may 
use  violence  and  I  shall  be  helpless  against  all  of  you  combined ; 
but  anyhow  I  will  not  act  against  my  conscience  even  if  I  lose 
my  life.  So  I  will  fight  with  you ;  but  first  of  all  let  me  know 
your  names.  You  know  Buslii  do  not  fight  without  first  declar- 
ing their  names.  Who  are  you  ?  My  name 
is  Nakae  Toju." 

No  sooner  had  he  pronounced  his  name 
than  the  robbers  threw  themselves  down 
before  him,  and  begged  for  pardon ;  for 
even  these  ruffians  knew  of  and  respected 
the  noble  character  of  the  sage,  and  were 
filled  with  shame  for  attacking  such  a  man. 
Nakae  Toju  was  greatly  pleased  to  see  their  repentance,  and 
gave  them  good  advice  concerning  their  future,  with  the  result 
that  they  forthwith  changed  their  ways  and  became  honest, 
hard-working  people. 



lu  ji  small  village  called  Kozu  near  Sakura,  there  stands  a 
baautiful  sliriue  known  as  Sogo-Jirija,     This  shrine  is  dedicated 
to  Sakura  S5go  who  is  honoured  as  a  kind  of  patron  saint  of 
farmers.     Sogo  lived  in  the  early  part  of 
the  Tokugawa  age, — nearly  three  hundred        X^^ 
years  ago.     He  was  the  headman  of  his 
own   and   several   other  neighbouring  vil- 
lages,   and    on    account   of    his    unselfish 
conduct,   was  loved  like  a  father  by   the 

At  that  time  the  lord  of  Sakura  had  a 
chief  official  who  was  a  merciless  tyrant ; 
and  the  poor  farmers  suffered  greatly  from 
the  heavy  taxes  that  he  compelled  them  to  pay,  even  when  the 
crops  failed,  and  they  were  hardly  able  to  find  food  for  their 

At  last  they  could  no  longer  bear  the  oppression  and  were 
about  to  rise  in  revolt,  when  Sogo  on  the  one  hand  appeased 
them,  and  on  the  other  appealed  to  the  chief  official  on  their 
behalf.  The  appeal,  however,  was  coldly  rejected  and  Sogo 
himself  was  imprisoned  on  a  charge  of  insolence. 

Nothing  daunted,  however,  he  managed  to  escape  from  prison 
and  made  his  way  to  Yedo,  determined  to  present  a  direct 
petition  to  the  lord  of  the  province  himself.  He  well  knew 
tliat  this  was  punishable  with  death,  according  to  the  cruel  law 
of  that  day,  but  he  never  hesitated  a  moment.  He  succeeded 
in  presenting  his  petition  for  the  sake  of  the  poor  people  that 
he  loved  so  well.  And  in  doing  so  he  laid  down  his  life  for 
them  ;  for  lie  was  afterwards  executed  by  order  of  the  heartless 






Yamada  Nagamasa,  the  successful  adventurer  and  soldier  of 
fortune,  lived  in  the  beginning  of  the  seventeenth  century.  The 
peaceful  atmosphere  of  the  Tokugawa  era  was  all  too  mild  for 
him,  so  he  decided  to  seek  adventure  abroad,  and  soon  an 
opportunity  to  get  away  presented  itself.  Two  merchants 
were  preparing  a  ship  in  Osaka  Bay  for  commerce  with 
Formosa,  and  although,  through  fear  of  him,  they  declined  to 
give  him  a  passage,  he  stowed  away  om  the  ship,  and  appeared 
on  deck  when  it  was  too  late  to  put  him  ashore. 

He  soon  tired  of  Formosa,  however,  and  made  his  way  to 
Siam  where  a  fierce  civil  war  was  then  going  on  ;  and  this  was 
just  the  chance  that  he  was  eagerly  looking  for.  He  found 
hundreds  of  Japanese  sailors  and  fishermen  wlio  had  drifted  to 
Siam,  and  at  once  set  to  work  to  organize  and  train  them. 
Then,  with  this  well  disciplined  and  sturdy 
body  of  men,  he  was  able  to  win  so  many 
victories  against  the  rebels  that  at  length 
his  skill  and  courage  won  the  admiration 
of  the  King  of  Siam.  Nagamasa  was  ap- 
pointed commander-in-chief  of  the  King's 
army,  and  it  was  chiefly  owing  to  his 
courage  and  strategic  ability  that  the  civil 
war  was  put  down. 

Many  years  later  the  two  merchants  of 
his  old  acquaintance  visited  Siam  for  trading  purposes  and 
were  interviewed  by  the  ex-stowaway  in  his  palace.  This  was 
probably  the  proudest  moment  in  Nagamasa's  life.  His  in- 
teresting career  was  unfortunately  cut  short  by  assassins  in 


■"^^     jiiw 








%.       . 

-  '        ■    ' 




Among  the  great  Daimyos  of  the  Tokiigawa  era  there  were 
men  of  much  wisdom  and  merit.  And  Tokugawa  Mitsnkuni, 
lord  of  Mito,  was  pre-eminently  such  a  man.  He  was  a  grand- 
son of  the  Shogiin  lyeyasu,  and  was 
born  in  1628. 

He  was  not  only  a  great  patron  of 
learning,  like  his  grandfather,  but 
was  himself  a  great  scholar.  The 
work  for  which  he  is  most  gratefully 
remembered  is  called  the  Dainihon^ 
sJd,  a  history  of  Japan  from  the  time  of  the  first  Emperor  Jim- 
mu,  imtil  the  abdication  of  the  Emperor  Go-Komatsu,  in  1413. 
In  the  compilation  of  this  great  work,  consisting  of  a  hundred 
volumes,  he  was  assisted  by  some  of  the  best  scholars  of  the 
day.  Tlie  work  was  completed  in  about  the  year  1715 ;  but 
was  not  published  until  1851.  This  was  the  first  proper  history 
of  Japan. 

It  is  remarkable  that  although  INIitsukuni  was  himself  so 
nearly  related  to  the  Shogun,  he  was  an  ardent  upholder  of  the 
imperial  power,  and  this  spirit  pervades  his  great  historical 
work.  In  fact,  it  was  mainly  this  book  that  made  the  Japanese 
people  painfully  aware  of  the  wrongful  treatment  of  the  Em- 

Mitsukuni  was  himself  a  wise  and  just  governor  of  his 
domain,  and  was  a  trusted  adviser  of  the  Shogmi.  At  the  age 
of  sixty  he  retired  from  active  life  ;  and  attended  by  only  one 
servant,  he  travelled  as  a  pilgrim  in  many  parts  of  Japan.  He 
spent  the  last  years  of  his  life  in  a  small  cottage  at  Ota  near 
Mito,  where  he  died  at  the  age  of  seventy-tlnree. 






The  poet  Baslio  was  born  in  1644 — two  years  later  than  Sir 
Isaac  Newton.  At  an  early  age  he  became  a  mystic  of  the  Zen 
{dhydna,  lit.  "  contemplation  ")  school,  and  devoted  his  whole 
life  to  virtue  and  poetry.  With  him  art  and  morality  were 
inseparable,  and  he  used  poetry  as  a  means  to  raise  the  level  of 
culture,  and  to  turn  people  to  a  higher  life.  His  influence  on 
Japanese  poetry  was  wholly  good ;  and  during  his  wanderings 
tln^oughout  Japan,  it  was  by  his  own  exalted  character,  no  less 
than  by  his  poems  and  teachings,  that  he  encouraged  all  to  live 
the  "life  beautiful." 

The  vehicle  of  poetry  used  by  Basho — and  of  which  he  was 
the  greatest  master — is  called  HoTcku,  a  half-stanza  limited  to 
seventeen  syllables.  It  is  a  verbal  impressionist  sketch  or 
vignette,  giving  but  the  briefest  outline  or  efflorescence  of  a 
scene  or  sentiment.  To  convey  an  idea  of  its  natui'e,  it  may  be 
best  to  quote  from  western  poetry  lines  resembling  the  Koklzu, 
— as  in  translation  the  charm  of  the 
original  is  lost.  The  lines  of  Wordsworth, 
for  example  : — 

"  O  Cuckoo !  shall  I  call  thee  Bird, 
Or  but  a  wandering  voice  ?  " 
somewhat  resemble  the  spirit  of  the  Hohku, 
And  also  Longfellow's  lines  : — 
A^^^W^  '  ^^^  hooded  clouds,  like  friars, 

y/|[  '^   I  ijlv  Tell  their  beads  in  drops  of  rain." 

Basho  is  said  to  have  had  three  thousand 
disciples  whom  he  instructed  and  encouraged  with  unfailing 
patience  and  good  nature.  At  the  age  of  fifty,  this  man  of 
noble  soul  passed  away  after  a  brief  illness. 



JO-i.^ — t- 

0-oka   Ecliizeu   Avas   a  judge  famous  for   his  wisdom,  and         |u3 
lived   in   the   Tokugawa  era   about  two  hundred   years  ago.         m 
There  is  au  old  book  called   0-oka-Seidan  which  is  a  record 
of  the  lawsuits  and  judgements  of  this  remarkable  man.     The         gij 
following  story  is  taken  from  this  book. 

A  certain  carpenter  in  Yedo  fell  sick, 
and  was  unable  to  pay  his  house-rent  for 
several  months.  The  landlord  of  the  house 
finally  took  away  the  carpenter's  tools  as 
security  for  the  seventy-five  kan  that  was 
owing,  and  told  him  to  vacate.  The 
carpenter,  after  removing  to  a  new  house, 
gradually  recovered,  but  he  could  not  do 
any  work  for  his  living  as  the  former  landlord  held  all  of  his 

The  new  landlord,  feeling  very  sorry  for  the  carpenter,  lent 
him  twenty-five  kan  and  told  him  to  give  it  to  the  former 
landlord  as  part  payment,  and  to  get  back  the  necessary  tools. 
But  the  latter  insisted  on  having  the  whole  seventy-five  kan 
before  returning  the  tools.  So  at  last  the  case  was  brought 
before  0-oka  Echizen. 

O-oka  first  called  the  new  landlord  to  court  and  ordered 
him  to  lend  the  carpenter  the  entire  sum,  which  was  then 
given  to  the  former  landlord  in  exchange  for  the  tools.  Then 
calling  the  former  landlord,  O-oka  addressed  him  as  follows : — 
*'  Yon  took  away  this  carpenter's  tools  and  thus  prevented  him 
from  working  for  one  hundred  days.  You  are  ordered  to  pay 
him  two  hundred  kan  as  wages  for  this  time,  as  it  was  owing 
to  your  merciless  action  that  he  was  left  helpless  and  im- 




tfp  Yamaga  Soko,  the  ideal  exemplar  of  Buslndb,  lived  in  the 

early  part  of  the  Tokngawa  era.     He  was  a  great  scholar,  but 

^         was  still  greater  as  a  master  of  military  tactics.     He  studied 
military  science  under  Hojo  IJjinaga  and  Obata  Kambei,  the 

iT  two  best  tacticians  of  that  day,  and  was  able  to  master  the 
profound  principles  of  it.  He  afterwards  established  a  new 
school  called  the  Yamaga  school  of  military  arts,  and  at  the 
age  of  thirty  his  fame  had  already  spread  throughout  the  land. 
At  his  private  school  in  Yedo  there  w^ere  thousands  of 
pupils,  including  many  Daimyos, — a  most  astonishing  fact 
w^hen  we  consider  the  aristocratic  customs  of  that  age.  At  last, 
however,  his  influence  became  so  great  that  the  timid  authori- 
ties began  to  look  upon  him  with  suspicion.  And  moreover  his 
very  original  way  of  thinking,  and  his  outspoken  criticisms,. 
gave  rise  to  many  slanders  against  him. 

The  result  was  that,  without  any  apparent  reason,  he  was> 
ordered  to  give  up  his  school  and  leave  Yedo.  Thereupon  he 
went  to  Ako  in  the  province  of  Harima,  where  he  had  formerly 
been  engaged  for  nine   years   by   the  lord  of  the  province, 

spent  ten  more  years  teaching  the  lord  and  his  retainers. 

It  is  noteworthy  that  among  these  retainers  who  received 
the  instruction  of  Yamaga,  were  Oishi  Yoshio  and  many  others 
who  afterwards  became  famous  as  the  well-known  "Forty- 
seven  Ronins." 


P»3'  permissiiM  cf  tli»  Oiho^sha. 

LANDSCAPE  BV  GVOKUSllO         (see  page  215). 

.f     A— ,^1,: 



No  incident  in  Japanese  history  is  more  widely  known  to 
tlie  public  than  that  of  the  Chus/nngura,  or  as  it  is  described 
in  English:  " The  Forty-seven  Ronins."  Innumerable  novels, 
stories,  essays  and  dramas  have  been 
written  about  this  famous  incident. 
In  English  also  the  story  has  been 
told,  and  many  western  people  have 
read  it  in  Mitford's  "  Tales  of  Old 

A  brief  outline  of  the  story  may 
be  given  in  a  few  words.  Asano  Nagonori,  lord  of  Ako 
Province,  was  grossly  insulted  in  the  Shogun's  palace  by  an  ill- 
natured  courtier  named  Kira  Kozukenosuke ;  and  attacked  him 
with  a  dagger,  inflicting  slight  wounds.  But  in  consequence  of 
tliis  momentary  fit  of  anger,  Asano  was  compelled  to  commit 
JiaraJciri,  and  his  house  became  extinct.  His  retainers,  who 
thus  became  Roni)!,  or  Samurai  without  a  lord,  swore  to  avenge 
the  death  of  their  master. 

How  they  accomplished  their  purpose,  and  finally  killed 
their  master's  enemy  at  his  residence  in  Yedo,  and  the  self- 
sacrifice  and  indomitable  persistence  which  they  showed  in 
carrying  out  their  object  cannot  be  told  in  these  few  words. 
Suffice  it  to  say  that  in  avenging  the  death  of  their  master 
they  did  not  spare  themselves.  For  when  their  purpose  was 
accomplished  they  calmly  laid  down  their  own  faithful  lives  by 
haraldri,  after  the  custom  of  that  day. 

At  Sengakuji  temple  in  Takanawa,  Tokyo,  may  be  found 
the  tombs  of  these  forty-seven  loyal  retainers. 







Tlie  leader  of  the  fortj-seveii  Runins  who  avengecl  the  death 
of  their  lord  was  called  Oishi  Yosliio.  When  the  great  mis- 
fortune overtook  the  house  of  his  lord,  he  did  his  utmost  to 
save  the  house  from  ruin,  and  only  wdien  he  found  it  quite 
hopeless  did  he  at  last  resort  to  the  act  of  vengeance. 

The  enemy  was  in  great  fear  of  Oishi,  and  he  was  con- 
stantly watched  by  spies.  So  in  order  to  deceive  them  he 
began  to  live  a  very  careless  and  dissolute  life,  until  at  last 
people  began  to  think  he  was  really  nothing  but  an  easy- 
going coward.  In  fact,  a  certain  knight  named  Kiken  was  so 
disgusted  with  Oishi  for  his  apparent  cowardice,  that  one  day 
on  meeting  him  in  the  street  Kiken  abused  and  insulted  him 
and  even  spat  upon  him  to  show  his  contempt.  But  Oishi 
merely  begged  his  pardon  in  an  abject  manner  and  appeared 
to  have  no  spirit  left  in  him.  In  this  way  the  enemies  of  his 
master's  house  were  thrown  off  their 
guard  and  the  loyal  retainers  led  by 
Oishi  were  able  to  accomplish  their 
terrible  purpose. 

When  this  was  accomplished,  and 
Kiken  at  last  understood  the  meaning 
of  Oishi's  action,  he  felt  so  much  ashamed  of  his  rude  conduct 
that  he  committed  haraklri  before  the  tomb  of  Oishi  at 
Sengakuji  in  Tokyo. 




Kaibara  Ekken,  tlie  famous  moralist,  was  born  iu  1630  at 
Fukuoka  iu  Chikuzen  where  liis  family  were  hereditary 
retainers  of  the  lord  of  that  province.  He  wrote  more  than 
a  hundred  works,  mainly  on  practical 
ethics ;  and  as  he  used  the  haim,  or 
simple  phonetic  script,  as  far  as 
possible,  even  children  and  ignorant 
persons  could  understand  what  he 
wrote.  His  sole  object  was  to 
instruct  and  benefit  people ;  and  his 
style,  though  manly  and  direct,  was  quite  free  from  mere 
rhetorical  ornament.  His  works  include  commentaries  on 
the  Chinese  classics,  works  of  travel,  and  treatises  on  hygiene 
and  botany. 

In  his  youth  he  was  interested  in  Buddhism,  but  later 
devoted  himself  to  study  of  the  Chinese  classics.  When  he 
grew  up,  he  went  to  Kyoto  where  he  studied  under  Kinoshita 
Junan  and  other  scholars ;  and  after  residing  there  for  three 
years,  he  returned  to  his  native  province,  where  he  held  official 
jx)sts  under  three  successive  Daimyos.  In  1700  he  retired  on 
a  pension,  and  went  to  live  in  Kyoto  until  his  death  in  1714. 

Although  Kaibara  was  one  of  the  most  eminent  scholars, 
of  his  day,  he  had  not  an  atom  of  pedantry  about  him ;  and 
in  consequence  of  this,  and  of  his  earnest  sincerity,  the  in- 
fluence of  his  vigorous  writings  was  very  great.  Even  now 
liis  bo(3ks  are  a  good  deal  read,  and  a  new  edition  of  his  works 
has  lately  been  printed.  His  wife — a  highly  accomplished 
lady — often  accompanied  Kaibara  on  his  travels,  and  also 
assisted  him  in  his  literary  labours. 





Kaibara  Ekken  was  fond  of  travelling  in  intervals  of  Lis 
busy  literary  life.  And  in  this  way  lie  acquired  a  knowledge 
of  tlie  customs  of  the  people  at  first  hand ;  and  also  was  able 
^f  to  find  out  what  w^ere  their  special  needs  in  the  way  of  ethical 
instruction.  He  was  personally  a  very  modest,  unassuming 
^  man,  and  as  he  passed  among  the  people,  they  did  not  guess 
that  so  eminent  a  scholar  was  observing  them  and  taking 
mental  notes  of  their  actions. 

An  amusing  incident  occurred  one  day  when  he  was  tra- 
velling by  boat.  One  of  his  fellow  j)assengers  was  a  young 
student  who  appeared  to  be  very  proud  of  his  scanty  learning, 
and  was  airing  his  knowledge  for  the  benefit  of  the  passengers, 
whom  he  hoped  to  impress.  In  particular,  he  expounded  the 
meaning  of  one  of  the  Chinese  classics ;  and  seeing  an  elderly 
man  listening  attentively,  the  student  addressed  most  of  his 
remarks  to  him.  In  fact,  the  student  became  quite  eloquent 
with  such  a  sympathetic  listener,  and  w^ent  on  expounding  and 

exhorting  very  condescendingly.     At 
-£-  %,    last  the  boat  arrived  at  the  destina- 
^y^^;^-     tion;  and  when  the  passengers  were 
\]  Mr^A^V^    parting,  the  student  asked  his  patient 
^-^jas^   listener  for  his  name.      "lam  Kai- 
bara   Ekken,"    replied    the    scholar 
simply.     On  hearing  this,   the   young   man  blushed    in    the 
utmost   confusion;   and  amidst  roars   of  laughter    from    the 
passengers,  he  precipitately  fled. 





Arai  Hakuseki  was  one  of  the  most  distinguished  scholars         04. 
in  Japan,  and  wrote  about  three  hundred  works.     The  prin- 
cipal ones  are:  the  HcmJcampu  (a  history  of  the  Daimyos  of 
Japan  from  1600  to   1630);   the   Ori-taku-sJdba  (his  autobio- 
graphy)  and   the  ToJcushi    Yoron  (a 
history  of  Japan).      All  of  these  and 
some   others    are   still  widely    read, 
and  highly   considered.      He    wrote 
these  books  in  Japanese   instead   of 
the    Chinese    dialect     of     the    Han 
dynasty   used  b}'   most   scholars    of 
that  day. 

He  was  born  in  Yedo  in  1657,  and  as  a  boy  gave  many 
proofs  of  precocious  intelligence.  In  fact,  when  only  tlnree 
years  old  he  copied  out  some  Chinese  characters  in  a  recogni- 
zable manner.  He  soon  attracted  the  notice  of  his  feudal 
lord,  named  Tsuchiya,  who  kept  him  constantly  by  his  side ; 
and  even  when  an  offer  to  adopt  the  boy  was  made  by  the 
lord  of  Morioka,  Tsuchi3'a  politely  declined  to  part  with  him. 

When  Hakuseki  grew  to  manhood,  his  teacher  Kinosliita 
Junan  tried  to  procure  for  him  an  appointment  with  the  lord 
of  Kaga  Province ;  but  Hakuseki  being  appealed  to  by  a  friend 
in  that  province  who  had  an  aged  mother  to  support,  begged 
his  teacher  to  use  his  influence  for  the  sake  of  this  friend. 
And  it  was  not  imtil  1693,  when  he  was  thirty-six  years  old, 
that  Hakuseki  had  a  favoiurable  opportunity  for  advancement. 
At  this  time  he  was  engaged  as  tutor  to  Tokugawa  lyenobu, 
the  lord  of  Kofu,  who  became  Shogim  in  1709;  and  from  this 
time  until  the  death  of  the  Shogun  in  1717,  Hakuseki  had 
great  influence, — chiefly  as  adviser  about  State  affairs.  From 
1716  imtil  his  death  in  1725,  at  the  age  of  sixty-nine, 
Hakuseki,  having  retired  from  office,  spent  his  time  among  the 
books  he  loved  so  well,  and  in  literary  work. 




Cliikamatsu  Monzaimon  may  be  called  the  Shakespeare 
of  Japan.  He  was  not  only  the  earliest,  but  also  the  greatest 
playwright  of  the  Tokugawa  age.  Prior  to  this  time,  there 
existed  only  the  very  simple  and  classical  plays  called  No  or 
Kyogen.  Chikamatsu  was  therefore  the  founder  of  the  modern 
Japanese  drama.  He  wrote  more  than  fifty  plays,  Avhich  may 
be  divided  into  two  large  groups,  namely,  the  historical  and 
the  domestic  plays.  Of  these  Aiura  Jigokii  ("The  Oil  Hell  "), 
Soga  Kaikeizan  ("  The  Soga  Vendetta "),  Ten  [710  Amnjima 
("  The  Punishment  of  Heaven "),  Sonezahi  Sldnjiu  ("  The 
Sonezaki  Double  Suicide  "),  etc.,  etc.,  may  be  mentioned  as  his 
representative  works. 

The  literary  style  of  Chikamatsu  is  entirely  unique,  and 
nobody  can  imitate  it.  He  uses  both  prose  and  verse,  and 
both  mingle  together  in  a  matchless  melody,  very  subtle  in 
its  combination.  His  [vocabulary  also  is  very  rich, — probably 
more  extensive  than  that  of  any  other  Japanese  author. 

Concerning  the  life  of  Chikamatsu  very  little  is  known. 
He  was  born  in  1653,  and  died  in  1724.  He  studied  in 
Kyoto  and  became  a  high  official  in  the  Imperial  Court ;  but 
afterwards  resigned  his  position  and  went  to  Osaka  where 
he  devoted  himself  to  writing  plays.  Except  these  few 
meagre  facts,  nothing  is  known  about  his  life;  and  in  this 
respect  again  his  case  resembles  that  of  Shakespeare. 


HANAWA  HOKIICHI,  THE  BLIND  SCHOLAR    (see  page  154). 
Continuing  his  exposition,  unaware  that  the  h'ght  has  gone  out. 
(The  room  is  supposed  to  be  in  darkness). 




The  story  of  Hanawa  Hokiichi,  the  famous  blind  scholar  who 
died  in  1821,  is  probably  without  parallel  in  the  lit<3rary  history        ^ 
of  the  world.    He  was  born  in  the  province  of  Musashi,  and  be- 
came blind  when  only  seven  years  C 
old.     He  was  sent  to  Yedo  where  he 
tried  to  learn  music  and  also  the  art 
of  shampooing,    which  is   practised 
by   blind   men   in   Japan ;    but   he 
failed  in  both.     Meanwhile,  however, 
his  wonderful  memory  began  to  at- 
tract the  attention  of  people,  for  he  is  said  to  have  remembered 
everything  that  he  heard.     At  last,  by  the  help  of  friends,  he 
was  able  to  devote  himself  entirely  to  study,  and  finally  became 
a  very  learned  man. 

Availing  himself  of  his  marvellous  memory,  he  set  about  the 
task  of  collecting  miscellaneous  old  documents,  and  systematiz- 
ed them  into  well-arranged  book  form.  This  book  was  called 
the  Gunsho  Buiju  and  consisted  of  no  fewer  than  2,820  volumes, 
— the  largest  book  ever  published  in  Japan.  It  was  reprinted 
during  the  Meiji  era,  and  is  still  considered  one  of  the  most 
useful  reference  books,  especially  for  historians. 

He  also  found  time  to  establish  a  school  called  the  Wagaku- 
sho  where  he  taught  the  Japanese  classics  to  many  students, 
whose  admiration  for  him  as  a  profound  scholar  and  critic  was 
equalled  only  by  their  devotion  to  him  as  a  man. 







Hanawa  Hokiiclii,  the  famous  blind  scholar  and  critic,  was 
once  reading  with  his  students  the  well-known  novel  called  Gen- 
ji  Monogatari.  The  lecture  room  was  rather  small,  and  was 
provided  with  only  one  lamp,  by  the  light  of  which  the  students 
were  just  able  to  see  their  books.  But  while  they  were  busily 
taking  notes  of  their  master's  lecture,  a  puff  of  wind  suddenly 
blew  out  the  lamp  and  left  them  in  darkness. 

Hanawa,  being  quite  unaware  of  this,  calmly  went  on  with 
his  lectm*e ;  but  the  students,  being  of  course  unable  to  see  to 
read  or  write,  had  to  ask  their  master  to  stop  for  a  few 

"Why,  what  is  the  matter?  "  enquired  Hana- 

"  It  is  the  light,  sir,"  they  replied.  "  The  wind 
has  blown  out  the  light,  and  we  can't  see  out* 
books.  Please  wait  a  moment  till  we  light  the 
lamp  again." 

Hanawa   smiled  when   he    heard    this,    and 
replied,  "  That  shows  the  inconvenience  of  hav- 
ing to  depend  on  eyes  ;  for  when  the  light  goes 
out,  you  suddenly  become  blind  and  helpless.     But  as  for  me, 
I'm  fortunate  in  never  having  any  trouble  of  this  kind." 

4)^   ^^   ^h 

'^S^        'WS^        '^1^ 

-t^  ^  ^ 



Of  the  many  great  classical  scholars  who  appeared  during  the  g 
Tokugawa  era,  probably  the  greatest  was  Motoori  Norinaga. 
He  was  born  in  1730,  in  Ise  Province,  and  at  the  age  of 
twenty-one  he  went  to  Kyoto  to  study  medicine.  Six  years 
later  he  returned  home  and  set  up  practice  as  a  physician.  But 
his  main  interest  was  in  classical  study,  and  all  of  his  spare 
time  was  spent  in  collecting  material  for  his  numerous  com- 
mentaries and  critical  works. 

His  fame  as  a  scholar  rests  chiefly  on  his  Kojiki-deny  a  com- 
mentary on  the  Kojiki.  This  old  book  called  KojiJci,  or  "  Re- 
cord of  Ancient  Matters,"  Avas  the  first  book  ever  written  in 
Japan,  and  was  completed  in  A.  D.  712.  It  contains  the  early 
traditions  of  the  Japanese  race  from  the  myths  which  form  the 
basis  of  Shinto  until  the  close  of  A.  D.  626.  This  book  is  very 
valuable  for  research ;  but  the  language  in  which  it  was  Avritten 
— a  clumsy  mixture  of  Chinese  and  Japanese— made  it  well- 
nigh  unintelligible  even  to  educated  Japanese  until  Motoori's 
monumental  work  appeared.  This  commentary  consists  of  no 
fewer  than  forty-four  good-sized  volumes,  and  took  over  thirty 
years  to  write. 

Motoori  also  devoted  himself  to  grammatical  research,  and 
wrote  a  book  called  Kotoha  no  Tama  no  ivo  which  tlu'ows  much 
light  on  the  structure  of  the  Japanese  language.  These 
researches  were  afterwards  continued  by  his  son  Motoori 
Haruniwa,  who  wrote  a  well-known  grammatical  work  called 
Kotoha  no  Yachimata.  These  were  the  pioneer  works  on 
Japanese  grammar. 



Rai  Sanyo  may  be  called  the  Macaulay  of  Japan.     He  liyecl 

in  the  beginning  of  the  eighteenth  centiu'y,  and  wrote  essays, 

UJ         poems,  and  histories,  all  of  which  his  contemporaries  considered 

to  be  the  best  of  their  kind.     And  although  many  great  men  of 

ng         letters  appeared  in  the  Tokugawa  era,  none  was  so  popular  or 

■^         so  widely  admired  during  his  lifetime. 

The  best  of  his  works  is  entitled  the  Nihon  GaisJii  and  relates 
the  history  of  the  Shogunate  from  its  beginning  in  the  twelfth 
century  imtil  the  establishment  of  the  Tokugawa  dynasty  of 
Shoguns.  As  a  history,  it  may  have  many  faults  ;  but  the  style 
is  remarkably  elegant,  and  few  historical  works  possess  such 
literary  charm. 

Another  important  reason  for  the  book's  popularity  is  that 
the  author  was  a  zealous  loyalist,  and  he  deeply  regretted  the 
deplorable  decline  of  the  Imperial  power. 
So  he  endeavoured  to  show  the  injustice 
and  defects  of  the  feudal  s^^stem,  and  to 
awaken  loyalty  to  the  Emperor.     Thu& 
the  book  had  great  influence  in  bringing 
about  the  Restoration.     He  made  a  mis- 
take, however,  in  writing  the  book  in  the 
Chinese  language, — a  common  error  with 
most  writers  of  the  Yedo  period.     For 
Chinese,  in  Japan,  held  a  position  similai* 
to  that  of  Latin  in  Europe  during  the 
But  the  custom  is  now  quite  changed,  and  the 
younger  generation  is  fast  losing  this  knowledge.     So  the  book 
is  in  danger  of  becoming  obsolete  ere  long,  like  Latin  books  in 
western  countries. 

Middle  Ages. 




This  great  historical  novelist  was  born  in  the  latter  part  of 
the  eighteenth  century.  He  wrote  hundreds  of  books,  but  the 
best  known  and  most  popular  are  the  Hakkenden  (literally, 
"The  Story  of  Eight 
Dogs  ")  and  Yiimi- 
harUsuki  {"  The 
Crescent  Moon "). 
His  style  is  elegant 
and  peculiarly  ryth- 
mical, and  has  serv- 
ed as  a  model  for 
ver}'  many  authors  of  later  days.  In  his  easy  handling  of 
historical  matters,  in  his  love  of  picturesque  and  martial 
incidents,  and  in  his  matchless  skill  of  graphic  description,  he 
closely  resembles  Sir  Walter  Scott.  Bakin,  however,  had  the 
disadvantage  of  waiting  in  a  language  of  ver}'  limited  cm-rency ; 
otherwise  his  name  would  have  undoubtedly  become  much  more 
widely  known. 

Owing  to  overwork,  especially  in  the  night-time,  Bakin  in 
his  old  age  became  blind.  Yet  in  spite  of  this  great  obstacle 
he  did  not  give  up.  First  he  set  about  the  education  of  liis 
daughter-in-law  who  was  rather  poor  in  learning  at  that  time. 
And  finally  she  was  able  to  act  as  his  assistant,  and  to  write 
down  what  he  would  dictate.  Thus  he  was  able  to  complete  the 
Hakkenden,  his  longest  work,  after  twenty-eight  years  of  con- 
tinuous toil.  In  this  respect,  the  case  of  Bakin  was  similar  to 
that  of  Milton  who  dictated  to  his  daughter,  and  finished  his 
great  work  "  Paradise  Lost  "  after  he  became  blind. 



1 60 


Among  Japanese  artists  Hokusai  is  perhaps  the  best  known 
to  people  in  the  West.  He  was  undoubtedly  one  of  Japan's 
greatest  painters,  and  especially  as  a  master  of  genre  painting 
he  was  unsurpassed. 

He  was  born  at  Yedo  in  1760,  and  at  first  studied  sculpture  ; 
but  gave  this  up  at  the  age  of  nineteen  and  became  a  painter. 
From  that  time  until  his  death  (in  1848),  at  the  age  of  ninety,  he 
devoted  himself  almost  passionately  to  his  art ;  remaining  single 
and  quite  regardless  of  wealth.  Indeed,  his  devotion  to  paint- 
ing was  remarkable :  even  on  his  deathbed  he  is  said  to  have 
cried,  "  Alas  !  if  I  could  live  ten  years  more,  I  should  become 
an  artist." 

Many  of  his  pictures  were  bought  and  taken  to  Europe  by 
the  Dutch  traders  who  came  to  Japan  at  that  time,  and  for 
many  years  Hokusai,  at  their  request,  continued  to  paint 
pictures  chiefly  of  Japanese  life  and  customs,  until  this  was 
finally  forbidden  by  the  Shogunate  authorities,  who  feared  that 
domestic  secrets  would  thus  leak  out.  So  not  many  of  his 
pictures  remain  in  Japan  ;  but  we  can  ap- 
preciate the  wood-engravings  found  in  such 
books  as  Hokusai  3Iangiva,  Fugahu  Hj/ak- 
hei,  Elion  Tbtoyu,  etc.,  etc.,  as  well  as  the 
illustrations  which  he  drew  for  some  of 
Bakin's  novels. 

In  character,  Hokusai  was  a  thorough 
Bohemian.  He  usually  occupied  a  small 
cheap  house  in  a  back  alle}^,  and  is  said  to 
have  once  removed  three  times  in  a  single 
day.  And  once  when  his  house  caught  fire,  he  just  picked  up 
his  brushes  and  left,  w^ithout  taking  any  of  his  scanty  furniture, 
or  troubling  at  all  about  his  loss. 




^     3i 



Painted  by  the  famous  artist,  Hokusai     (see  page  i6o). 



Ikku  was  a  famous  liumourist  who  died  about  eighty  years 
ago.     He  was  a  voluminous  writer,  but  the  best  of  his  works  is 
the  well-known  HizaJcurige  ("  Shank's  Mare  ").     This  work  is 
quite  loose  in  construction,  be- 
ing simply  a  series  of  adventur- 
es and  experiences  of  two  jolly 
fellows   called    Kitahachi    and 
Yajirobei,  when  on  their  walk- 
ing pilgrimage  from   Yedo  to 
Kyoto.     Full  of   comic    situa- 
tions, jokes  and  good  humour, 

this  book  resembles   "The   Pickwick  Papers,"  and  one  can 
hardly  read  a  page  of  it  without  laughing. 

Ikku  himself  was  a  curious  fellow,  and  a  typical  Bohemian 
in  his  ways.  He  was  very  fond  of  wandering  about  the 
country,  and  would  often  start  off  on  a  journey  without  giving 
a  word  of  notice  to  anybody.  In  some  respects  his  life  resem- 
bled that  of  Oliver  Goldsmith. 

Even  on  his  deathbed  he  kept  up  his  habit  of  practical 
joking.  He  gave  his  friends  and  pupils  strict  injunctions  that 
his  corpse  was  to  be  burned  in  the  clothes  that  he  was  then 
wearing.  When  he  died  and  the  body  was  placed  on  the 
crematory  fire,  suddenly  a  loud  report  was  heard,  and  to  the 
astonishment  of  everybody,  several  rockets  shot  up  into  the  air. 
Ikku  had  concealed  the  fireworks  in  his  bosom,  simply  to  amuse 
his  mourners,  and  to  create  a  little  diversion  at  his  funeral. 





Many  amusing  stories  are  told  about  Ikku,  tlie  novelist,  by 
his  biographers  ;  and  the  following  example  well  illustrates  the 
quaint  eccentricity  of  this  typical  Bohemian.  Ikku  was  very 
careless  about  money  matters,  and  his  house  often  lacked  even 
the  scanty  fm:niture  considered  necessary  in  Japan.  So  he 
used  to  put  pictures  of  the  missing  articles  on  his  walls ;  and  on 
festival  days,  he  satisfied  the  requirements  of  custom  in  the 
same  peculiar  way. 

One  New  Year's  Day,  when  a  publisher  came  to  pay  a  visit 
of  ceremony,  Ikku  received  him  very  cordially  ;  and  somewhat 
to  the  publisher's  bewilderment,  prevailed  on  him  to  take  a  hot 
bath.  But  no  sooner  had  his  guest  retired  for  this  purpose 
than  Ikku  hastily  put  on  the  publisher's  ceremonial  costume, 
and  left  the  house. 

A  few  minutes  later,  when  the  publisher  came  out  of  the 
bath-room,  he  found  to  his  great  astonishment  that  both  his 
clothes  and  his  host  were  gone.  And  as  there  was  no  fii'e  in  the 
room,  of  course  he  could  not  remain  naked  in  the  cold  ;  so  he 
had  to  get  into  the  bath  again  and  again  until  Ikku  returned 
some  hours  later. 

"Why  did  you  take  my  clothes?"  he  cried  angrily,  when 
Ikku  at  last  appeared.  "  I've  had  to  remain  for  hours  in  your 

"  It  was  extremely  kind  of  you  to  come,"  replied  Ikku 
innocently.  "  The  fact  is  I  have  no  clothes  suitable  for  making 
New  Year  calls,  so  I  just  borrov*^ed  yom^s  for  a  short  time." 


By  permission  of  the  Shinbi-shoin. 

Famous  picture  by  Okyo.       (see  page  167). 



Maruyama  Okyo,  the  famous  painter,  appeared  in  Kyoto 
during  the  eighteenth  century  and  founded  a  new  school  of 
painting  called  the  Shijo-ryu.  At  first  he  followed  the  Kano 
school,  but  later  put  aside  conventional  principles,  and  attempt- 
ed a  reform  based  on  closer  observation  of 
nature.  His  j^ictures  of  birds,  fish,  and 
animals  were  singularly  lifelike,  and  have 
never  been  surpassed  before  or  since.  His 
pure  natm*alism  gave  a  great  im]3ulse  to 
art,  and  led  to  the  appearance  of  many 
schools  of  genre  paintings. 

Once  he  was  asked  to  make  a  picture  of 
a  sleeping  boar ;  and  as  he  had  never  seen 
one,  he  asked  a  farmer  to  keep  a  look  out,  and  let  him  know 
when  a  good  chance  came.  A  few  days  later  the  farmer 
reported  that  there  was  a  boar  sleeping  in  a  thicket  near  by  ; 
so  Okyo  hastened  to  the  spot  and  made  a  careful  sketch.  He 
felt  rather  proud  of  this,  and  showed  it  to  a  friend  from  the 
mountains  of  Kurama  who  came  to  see  him.  But  in  these 
mountains  there  were  many  boars,  and  when  his  friend  saw 
the  picture  he  at  once  remarked  that  the  animal  was  not 
sleeping,  but  deathly  sick ;  and  he  explained  minutely  the 
posture  of  a  sleeping  boar.  This  criticism  proved  to  be  per- 
fectly correct :  for  the  next  day  the  farmer  reported  that  the 
boar  had  died.  Okyo  was  much  impressed  by  this,  and  would 
tell  his  pupils  about  it  when  urging  upon  them  the  need  for 
greater  accuracy  of  observation.  A  reproduction  of  his  famous 
picture  of  carp  will  be  found  on  page  165. 





■o.v<3  li^ovisllf  i^-i:i  '^€^-^' 




li  Naosuke's  name  is  inseparably  connected  with  tlie 
opening  of  Japan  to  foreign  trade,  for  at  that  time  he  was  the 
Daird,  or  Prime  Minister  of  the  Tokugawa  government,  and 
the  whole  responsibility  for  diplomatic  negotiations  with 
western  countries  rested  on  him.  A  few  yeara  before  he 
became  Daird,  the  Tokngawa  government  had  made  temporary 
treaties — first  with  America,  then  with  England  and  Knssia, 
concerning  the  opening  of  a  few  seaports ;  and  this  concession 
had  produced  intense  excitement  throughout  the  empire.  As  a 
result  of  this,  two  parties  came  into  existence :  one  of  them, 
called  the  Jd-i  party,  wished  to  expel  the  foreigners ;  and  the 
other,  called  the  Kaikoku  party,  were  in  favour  of  opening  the 
country.  The  members  of  the  Kaikolm  party  were  mostly 
connected  with  the  Shogunate,  and  had  come  to  realize  the 
folly  of  trying  to  resist  the  pressure  from  outside ;  while  the 
Jb-i  party  w\as  made  up  of  the  conservative  elements  of  the 
country,  together  with  loyalists  who  wished  to  overthrow  the 
Tokugawa  government,  and  to  restore  the  Emperor. 

Meanwhile  five  of  the  great  foreign  Powers  were  pressing 
the  Tokugawa  government  to  conclude  the  treaties  as  promised. 
And  it  was  then  that  Lord  li,  seeing  the  danger  of  further 
postponement,  quickly  concluded  these  treaties,  in  1858,  with- 
out waiting  for  the  sanction  of  the  Emperor.  This  arbitrary 
action  caused  still  greater  agitation  for  a  time ;  and  even  now 
there  are  some  who  do  not  wholly  approve  of  his  action. 

In  suppressing  this  agitation.  Lord  li's  extreme  severity  in 
dealing  with  many  loyalists  such  as  Yoshida  Shoin,  and  even 
the  Daimyo  of  Mito,  caused  intense  resentment,  and  he  w^as 
finally  assassinated  while  on  his  way  to  the  Shogun's  palace 
CD  the  3rd  of  March,  1860. 




Among   tlie   many  patriots  who  appeared  towards  tlie  end         m 
of   the   Tokugawa   Shogiinate,    one   of  the  most   notable   was 
Yoshida    Shoin.     He    w^as   a   Samurai    of   the    Choshu   clan, 
and  was  born  in   1830.     He  was  a  very  precocious  boy,  and 
from  his  youth  was  noted  for  his  high  attainments. 

In  those  days  Japan  was  in  a  state  of 
great  commotion :  for  western  Powers  were 
knocking  at  the  door  that  had  been  closed 
for  two  centuries,  and  the  surprise  and 
agitation  caused  by  the  advent  of  the  "  Black 
Ships"  can  easily  be  imagined.  At  this 
critical  time,  the  feudal  government  was 
quite  unable  to  deal  with  the  situation  ;  and  Yoshida  Shoin 
was  one  of  the  first  to  see  this,  and  the  necessity  for  con- 
solidating the  country  under  the  direct  rule  of  the  Emperor. 

He  also  saw  the  need  for  obtaining  direct  knowledge 
of  foreign  countries:  so  when  Commodore  Perry  with  his 
seven  ships  came  to  open  negotiations  with  the  Shogunate, 
Yoshida  Shoin  conceived  the  bold  idea  of  going  abroad  himself 
for  this  purpose.  He  went  to  Shimoda  where  the  American 
ships  were  lying  at  anchor,  and  boarding  the  flagship, 
implored  Commodore  Perry  to  take  him  to  America.  But 
Perry  discreetly  declined  to  do  so,  and  Yoshida  was  put 
on  shore.  Then  knowing  there  was  no  escape,  he  gave 
himself  up  to  the  authorities,  and  was  condemned  to  im- 
prisonment. But  being  set  free  after  a  time,  he  started 
a  private  school  in  Choshu  Province ;  and  Prince  Itu,  Prince 
Yamagata,  and  many  other  eminent  men  were  among  his 
pupils.  A  few  years  later,  however,  his  radical  vieAvs  incurred 
the  displeasure  of  the  authorities,  and  he  was  put  to  death  in 



The  word  Sliogun  is  so  closely  connected  with  feudalism 
in  Japan,  and  now  sounds  so  remote  that  most  western 
people  would  be  surprised  to  hear  that  the  last  of  the  great 
Tokugawa  Shoguns  is  still  alive.  It  is  a  fact,  however,  that 
Prince  Tokugawa,  at  present  living  a  retired  life  in  Tokyo,  is 
none  other  than  the  Shogun  Keiki,  now  a  venerable  old  man 
of  seventy-four. 

The  Shogun  lemochi,  his  ^predecessor,  died  yoimg  (in  1866) 
and  left  no  son.  Now,  in  case  of  there  being  no  direct  heir, 
the  new  Shogun  was  always  chosen  from  one  of  the  three 
noble  families  of  Owari,  Kii,  or  Mito, — all  descended  from 
Tokugawa  leyasu.  And  in  this  case  Keiki,  the  son  of  Akinari, 
lord  of  Mito,  w^as  chosen. 

Jt  was  indeed  a  fortunate  thing  for  Japan  that  such  a 
clear-sighted  and  peace-loving  man  stood  at  the  head  of 
the  feudal  government  at  this  critical  time.  For  the  Shogun 
Keiki  was  one  of  the  first  to  see  the  absurdity  and  danger 
of  dividing  the  administration  between  the  Emperor 
and  the  Sliogun ;  and  the  very  next  year  he  resigned 
his  authority.  Thus  it  was  mainly  owing  to  this  act 
of  sacrifice,  that  Japan  was  able  to  accomplish  the 
work  of  the  Restoration  without  disastrous  civil  war 
and  incalculable  misfortune. 

The  heir  of  Prince  Keiki  Tokugawa,  a  young  man  of 
twenty-five  named  Yoshihisa,  is  a  graduate  of  the 
Imperial  University;  and  last  year  he  married  the 
daughter  of  Prince  Arisugawa. 


The   story  \oi   Robinson   Crusoe   has   been   translated    into 
Japanese,   and  is  read  with  keen   interest  by  young  people 
here,  and  by  old  ones  as  well.     In  Japan  also  there  have  been 
instances    not  unlike    that    de- 
scribed in  the  famous  story,  and 
one  of  the  most  notable  of  these 
happened   about   seventy   years 
ago.     This  was  the  well-known 
case  of  Nakahama  Manjiro,  the 
son  of  a  poor  fisherman  in  Tosa  Province. 

When  Nakahama  was  thirteen  years  old,  he  went  out  fishing 
one  day  with  his  father  and  brothers  in  their  small  fishing- 
boat.  Suddenly  a  great  storm  arose,  and  their  boat  soon 
became  helpless,  and  drifted  away  towards  the  north  for  about 
ten  days.  At  last  they  reached  the  shores  of  a  small  desert 
island  where  they  landed,  and  for  several  months  kept  them- 
selves alive  by  eating  the  flesh  of  birds,  and  such  food  as  they 
could  find  on  the  island. 

One  day  an  American  whaling-boat  happened  to  call 
at  this  island,  and  Nakahama  was  taken  to  America  where 
he  entered  a  primary  school.  He  was  probably  the  first 
Japanese  to  be  educated  at  an  American  school.  Afterwards  he 
became  by  turns  a  sailor,  a  cooper,  and  a  gold  miner,  and 
made  his  living  in  this  way. 

After  about  ten  years,  he  retm*ned  to  Japan,  and  was  very 
useful  to  the  government;  for  when  Commodore  Perry  came 
to  Uraga,  it  was  Nakahama  Manjiro  who  translated  Perry's- 
official  letter  to  the  authorities.  Also  he  did  very  useful 
service  to  his  country  as  a  teacher  of  English,  as  an  inter- 
preter, and  as  general  adviser  concerning  foreign  affairs. 

He  died  a  rich  man  about  ten  years  ago ;  and  one  of  his  sons, 
is  now  a  well-known  doctor  in  Japan. 



In  Odawara  near  Hakone  there  is  a  beautiful  Shinto  shrine 
called  *'Ninomiya  Jinja,"  dedicated  to  the  memory  of  Nino- 
miya  Sontoku,  who  died  about  fifty-six  years  ago.  He  was 
a  rare  combination  of  idealist  and  eminently  practical  man ; 
and  w^as  a  great  agricultm-al  economist  as  well  as  a  teacher  of 
ethics.  His  teachings,  usually  known  as  "The  Ninomiya 
doctrine "  {Ninomiya-Kyo),  are  much  esteemed  by  many 
eminent  statesmen  and  business  men,  as  well  as  by  thousands 
of  admirers  throughout  the  country.  This  is  all  the  more 
remarkable  when  we  consider  that  he  was  the  self-taught  son 
of  a  simple,  uneducated  farmer. 

His  parents  died  when  he  was  only  sixteen,  and  left  him 
so  poor  that  he  had  to  seek  employment  on  a  farm  and  work 
very  hard  for  many  years.  Yet  aftel'  toiling  in  the  fields 
all  day  long,  he  contrived  to  find  time  for  study  at  night,  and 
little  by  little  was  able  to  gain  an  education. 

His  first  efforts  were  directed  to  restoring  the  house  of  his 
family,  and  he  succeeded  not  only  in  this  but  also  in  greatly 
improving  the  condition  of  the  whole  village.  After  this  he 
was  taken  into  the  service  of  the  lord  of  Odawara,  and  given 

the   task   of   improving  a  miserably 

impoverished    district.         This    also 

was  a  splendid  success;  and  by  the 

"^  ^5^?^;^^^7^     'i:':  ^  TaMi      example  of  his  own  imtiring  industry, 

and  by  touching  the  hearts  of  the 
people,  he  was  able  to  work  such 
wonders  that  his  aid  and  advice  were 
sought  by  the  lords  of  many  other  provinces.  He  died  at  the 
age  of  seventy-one,  after  a  life  of  service  and  benevolence  that 
will  be  long  remembered. 


THE  SEVEN  GODS  OF  FORTUNE        (see  page  227). 



Saigo    Takainori   was    a   man 


gi-eat    personality,    and 
exercised  a  remarkable  influence   over  liis  fellow  men.     The 
soldiers  who  served  under  him,  together  with  his  companions 
in  arms,  were  greatly  devoted  to  him.      He 
was  a   born  military   leader,  and  rendered 
valuable  service  to  the  country  at  the  time 
of  the  Restoration. 

The  latter  part  of  his  life,  however,  was 
unfortunately  marred  by  misunderstandings 
with    the    government,    and    his   end    was 
tragical.     When  he  became  a  Councillor-of- 
State  he  advocated  the  sending  of  a  military 
expedition  to  Korea ;  for  he  regarded  that 
country  as  a  source  of  danger, — "  a  dagger 
pointed   at   the   heart  of  Japan."     In  this, 
however,    he     was    strongly     opposed     by 
Okubo,    Kido,    I  to,    and    others    who   had 
lately  returned  from  abroad ;  and  who  insisted  that  there  were 
far   more   urgent  matters  to  attend  to  at  home.     Saigo  then 
returned   to   Satsuma,   his   native    province,   and    founded    a 
military  school  there  at  his  own  expense. 

A  few  years  later  (in  1877),  the  Satsuma  rebellion  broke 
out,  and  for  ten  months  Saigo  fought  stubbornly  with  the 
overwhelming  army  of  the  government.  When  the  final  defeat 
came,  he  died  with  all  his  followers  at  Shiroyama  in  Satsuma. 
He  was  fifty-one  years  old  at  the  time  of  his  death.  At  Ueno 
Park  in  Tokyo,  a  large  bronze  statue  of  Saigo  stands  in  a 
prominent  position. 







Saigo  Takamori  was  one  day  speaking  to  Sir  Harry  Parkes 
who  at  that  time  was  British  Minister  to  Japan.  Said  Saigo  : 
"  I  am  quite  an  ignorant  man,  and  don't  know  anything  about 
the  present  state  of  the  world.  There  is  something  that  I 
don't  clearly  imderstand.  Will  you  please  explain  it  to  me?" 
*'  Oh,  certainly,"  replied  the  Minister. 

"  Well,"  said  Saigo,  "  they  say  that  England  is  a  depend- 
ency of  France.  Is  that  so?"  "You  must  be  joking,  aren^t 
you?  "  enquired  the  Minister.  "You  who  are  a  Councillor  of 
State  surely  know  very  well  that  England  is  not  a  dependency 
of  any  country." 

"I  am  not  at  all  clear  on  that  point,"  replied  Saigo,  "for, 
you  know,  whenever  our  government  negotiates  with  you 
about  foreign  affairs  you  always  say.  'I'll 
give  you  an  answer  after  consulting  with  the 
French  Minister' ;  or,  '  The  French  Minister 
doesn't  agree,  so  I  cannot  agree.'  So  it 
seems  that  you  are  unable  to  act  without 
the  consent  of  France.  If  you  are  the 
envoy  with  full  powers  from  an  independent 
country,  I  can't  see  why  you  should  always 
follow  the  advice  of  the  Minister  from 

Sir  Harry  Parkes  smiled  grimly  when 
he  heard  this ;  but  afterwards  remarked  to 
his  friends :  "  Saigo  is  undoubtedl}^  the 
cleverest  diplomat  in  Japan." 



^^^^...^^ :^ 

Okubo,  Kiclo,  and  Saigo  are  called  the  three  great  men  of  the        >^ 
Restoration.     Each    one    had  his  strong  points  and  each  did        /a 
great  service.     Both  Okubo  and  Saigo  were  men  of  Satsuma 
Province,  and  were  intimate  friends  from  childhood.  ?'J 

In  the  fourth  year  of  Meiji,  Oknbo  together  with *3 

Ito,  Kido,  and  many  others  went  abroad  in  the  suite        ^ 
of  Prince   Iwakura.      Okubo    devoted  himself  very        ^ 
earnestly  to  the  investigation  of  western  civilization 
and  learning,   and   determined  to  raise  the  general 
level  of  culture  in  Japan. 

Two  years  later,  when   this   party  returned  from 
abroad,  they  found  militarism  rampant  at  home,  with 
Saigo  at  the  head,  and  bent  on  the  invasion  of  Korea. 
Okubo  and  the  rest  of  his  party  strongly  opposed  this,  knowing 
the  multitude  of  important  reforms  to  be  attended  to  at  home. 
After  vehement  debates  Saigo  and  his  party  retired  from  the 
government,  and  the  Satsuma  rebellion  then  followed.     At  this 
critical  time  Okubo  stood  firmly  at  the  head  of  the  government, 
and  managed  things  with  matcliless  skill  and  wisdom. 

But  he  had  incurred  the  hatred  of  the  admirers  of  Saigo ; 
and  in  the  eleventh  year  of  Meiji,  when  on  his  way  to  a  meet- 
ing of  the  cabinet,  he  was  killed  by  assassins  at  Kioi-zaka  in 
Tokyo.  He  was  then  forty-seven  years  old.  Okubo  was  a 
man  of  great  decision  of  character,  and  always  calm  and  self- 
possessed.  He  was  certainly  one  of  the  greatest  statesmen  and 
diplomatists  of  modem  Japan. 



Two  of  the  famous  trio  who  did  such  great  service  at  the 
Kestoration,  have  already  been  described;  there  remains  the 
refined  and  scholarly  statesman  Kido  Koin.  He  was  a  Samu- 
rai of  the  Choshu  clan,  and  from  his  youth  was  distinguished 
for  his  bravery  and  marked  ability.  When  the  new  admini- 
stration was  first  organized  in  Tokyo  after  the  Kestoration, 
Kido  and  Okubo  were  the  backbone  of  the  government. 

Kido's  chief  services  were  in  the  adjustment  of  the  greatly 
disorganized  home  affairs;  and  it  was  he  who  proposed  the 
abolition  of  the  clans,  the  accomplishment  of  which  consum- 
mated the  work  of  the  Kestoration.  The  establishment  of  the 
senate  and  the  supreme  court  was  also  the  work  of  this  great 
statesman.  In  this  work  he  had  an  excellent  assistant  in  the 
person  of  the  late  Prince  Ito 
who  was  then  a  young  man  of 
about  thirty.  The  relations 
between  these  two  were  almost 
like  those  of  master  and  pupil ; 
and,  in  fact,  it  was  mainly  due 
to  this  connection  that  Ito  ob- 
tained his  unique  opportunity. 

Kido  was  one  of  the  party 
that  went  abroad  on  the  famous 
mission  with  Prince  Iwakura, 
and  it  was  mainly  he  and  Oku- 
bo who,  on  their  return  home, 
checked  the  militarism  of  Saigo 
and  his  party.  Subsequently  his  health  gradually  declined, 
and  during  the  Satsuma  rebellion  he  died  at  the  age  of  forty- 


(His  last  pliotograph). 



(  1  )  ■         # 

To  tell  adequately  about  tlie  life  of  Prince  Ito  one  would 
have  to  narrate  the  principal  events  of  tlie  Meiji  era ;  for  lie 
was   intimately   connected  with  them   all.      So  only  a   brief 
sketch  of  his  career  will  be  attempted  here.     Ito 
Hakubun  was  born  in  1841,  and  was  the  son  of 
a  poor  Samurai  in  the  service  of  tlie  lord  of  Clio- 
shu.     When  he  was   seventeen    years    old,    he 
studied  under  the   famous   scholar  and  patriot 
Yoshida  Shoin  who  attempted  to  go  abroad  when 
Commodore    Perry    came    to    Japan    with    his 
squadron  (in  1854). 

At  the  age  of  twenty-two  (in  1863),  Ito  to- 
gether with  Inoue  (now  Marquis  Inoue)  went 
secretly  to  England.  But  after  a  few  months 
they  were  sui-prised  to  see  in  The  Times  one 
day  a  report  that  the  Choshu  clan  Was  involved  in  serious 
trouble  with  foreign  countries,  and  that  the  city  of  Shimono- 
seki  was  to  be  bombarded  by  a  combined  foreign  fleet.  There- 
upon Ito  and  Inoue  hastily  returned  to  Japan  in  the  hope  of 
saving  their  country  from  danger. 

On  his  retm-n  to  Japan,  Ito  was  very  useful  as  an  adviser  for 
foreign  affairs,  though  he  was  often  on  the  point  of  being 
assassinated  by  the  anti-foreign  party.  But  after  the  Resto- 
ration his  official  career  was  an  uninterrupted  success ;  and  his 
rapid  promotion  was  almost  without  parallel  in  the  history  of 
Japan.  A  few  more  details  of  his  public  life  will  be  given  in 
the  continuation  of  this  sketch. 

1 82 


(2  ) 

In  the  first  year  of  Meiji  (1868),  Ito  became  tlie  governor  of 
Hyogo,  though  he  was  then  only  twenty-eight  years  old.  In 
the  fourth  year,  he  went  abroad  in  the  suite  of  Prince  Iwakura, 
and  on  his  return  home  he  was  made  a  State  Councillor. 

After  the  death  of  Okubo  in  the  eleventh  year  of  Meiji,  Ito 
and  Okuma  (now  Count  Okuma)  were  the  two  great  figures  in 
the  government.  And  when,  soon  afterwards,  Okuma 
was  obliged  to  retire,  Ito  became  the  most  promi- 
nent statesman  in  Japan.  These  two  were  very  good 
friends  privately,  and  esteemed  each  other  very 
highly;  but  they  differed  greatly  in  their  political 

In  the  fom-teenth  year  of  Meiji  (1881),  Ito  again 
went  abroad  to  study  the  constitutions  of  western 
countries — for  to  him  was  intrusted  the  great  task  of 
forming  a  constitution  for  Japan.  He  was  busily 
engaged  in  this  work  for  several  years,  and  in  1889 
the  promulgation  of  the  constitution  took  place. 

Ito  was  Prime  Minister  four  times,  the  last  cabinet 
formed  by  him  being  in  the  thirty-third  year  of  Meiji 
(1900).  The  Japan  and  China  war  broke  out  during 
his  second  ministry,  and  finally  he  negotiated  peace 
with  Li  Hung  Chang.  At  the  close  of  the  Russo- 
Japanese  war,  Ito  was  raised  to  the  rank  of  prince. 

It  is  hardly  necessary  to  add  how  Prince  Ito  became  liesi- 
dent-General  of  Korea,  in  1905,  and  how  he  was  assassinated 
by  a  Korean  fanatic  at  Kharbin  on  the  26th  of  October,  1909, 
as  these  matters  are  well  known  to  all. 




Marqnis  Inoue  and  liis  life-long  friend  Prince  Ito  went 
abroad  together  about  fifty  years  ago.  At  that  time  no  one  but 
a  few  diplomatic  officials  of  the  feudal  government  was  permit-  .« 

ted  to  leave  Japan.     In  fact,  it  meant  certain  death  to  '^ 

any  one  discovered  attempting  to  do  so.     But  in  spite      ^^  c^ 

of  this,  these  two  determined  to  risk  it.  They  bought 
old  foreign  clothes  in  Yokohama,  and  disguising  them- 
selves as  much  as  possible,  left  Yokohama  on  a  mer- 
chant-steamer, and  arrived  at  Shanghai,  where  they 
made  arrangements  wdth  a  shipping  company  to  get 
on  to  England.  The  manager  of  this  shipping  com- 
pany asked  them  their  object  in  going  abroad ;  but  as 
neither  of  them  knew  English  well,  they  found  it 
difficult  to  reply.  At  last  Inoue  opened  a  dictionary 
and  pointed  to  the  word  "  navigation,"  meaning  sim- 
ply that  it  w^as  their  intention  to  cross  the  sea.  The 
manager  thought  this  meant  that  they  were  going 
to  England  to  study  navigation,  and  seemed  to  ap- 
prove of  their  intention,  so  they  were  allowed  to  work 
their  way  on  a  small  sailing-ship  via    the  Cape  of  ' ' 

Good  Hope. 

The  voyage  to  England  took  four  months  and  eleven  days, 
and  during  this  time  Ito  and  Inoue  suffered  great  hardship ; 
for  they  were  treated  as  common  sailors  and  had  nothing  to  eat 
but  salt  beef  and  hard  biscuit.  Their  shipmates  little  thought 
that  one  of  these  rough-looking  youths  was  to  become  a 
marquis ;  and  the  other  a  prince,  and  the  greatest  statesman 
in  Japan !  In  after  years,  Ito  and  Inoue  often  laughed  over 
their  rough  experiences  on  this  terrible  voyage. 



Prince  Kitashirakawa,  born  in  1847,  was  commonly  known 
as  Prince  Rinno-ji  in  the  Restoration  days,  for  he  was  then 
head  priest  of  Rinno-ji,  a  famous  temple  at  Ueno  in  Tokyo,  it 
being  the  custom  then  for  Princes  of  the  Blood  to  become 

At  the  time  of  the  Restoration,  a  fierce  battle  was  fought  in 
the  grounds  of  this  temple,  between  the  imperial  forces  and 
several  thousand  vassals  of  the  Shogun,  who  were  very  much 
discontented  with  the  new  government.     They  called  them- 
selves the  Shogitai  (lit.  "Loyal  Band  "),  and  Prince 
Rinno-ji,  then  a  young  man  of  about  twenty,  was  put 
at  their  head,  though  rather  against  his  own  will.     In 
this  battle  the  rebels  were  defeated  and  fled  to  the 
north,  where  for  several  months  the  prince  was  obliged 
to  fight  with  them  against  the  imperial  troops.     At 
last  Prince  Kitashirakawa  surrendered,  and  was  taken 
to  Kyoto  for  imprisonment. 

At  the  close  of  the  Restoration  warfare,  the  prince 
was  pardoned  on  account  of  his  youth;  and  in  1S70 
was  sent  to  France  to  study  military  sciences.  On 
his  return  to  Japan  seven  years  later,  he  was  made  a 
major  in  the  regular  army.  In  the  twenty-fifth  year 
of  Meiji  (1892),  he  was  advanced  to  the  rank  of 
lieutenant-general ;  and  during  the  China  and  Japan 
war  he  commanded  the  Imperial  Guards  division 
which  was  sent  to  Formosa.  Here  he  fought  many 
battles  against  the  rebel  army  led  by  a  Chinese  general.  But 
before  the  war  was  over  he  died  of  typhus,  at  the  age  of  forty- 
eight.  His  eldest  son  lately  married  Princess  Tsune,  a 
daughter  of  the  Emperor. 



Katsu  Kaisliu  was  a  keen-siglited  statesman  in  the  service 

of  the  Tokngawa  Shogunate,  and  played  a  very  important  part 

at  the  time  of  the  Restoration.     He  was  born  in  Yedo  in  1823, 

and  was  one  of  the  first  to  study  the  Dutch  language 

^  and  western  sciences.     He  was  rather  poor  then,  and 

-^  could  not  afford  to  buy  a  Dutch  dictionary ;  for  there 

-^         were    very  few  copies  in  Yedo,  and   the   price   was 

>-        ridiculously  dear.     But  he  managed   to  borrow  one 

from  a  physician  by  paying  ten  dollars  a  year,  and 

set  about  the  heavy  task  of  copying  it.     By  working 

almost  night  and  day,  he  was  able  in  a  year  to  finish 

two  copies,  one  of  wiiich  he  kept  and  the  other  he 

sold  to  pay  his  expenses. 

In  1855  he  was  sent  to  Nagasaki  to  study  naval 
science  under  Dutch  teachers;  and  his  progress  was 
so  rapid  that  on  his  return  to  Yedo  in  1859,  he  was 
appointed  captain  of  a  warship  called  the  Kanho 
Mam,  which  soon  afterwards  conveyed  to  America 
^:  an  ambassador  from   the   feudal  government.     This 

was  the  first  Japanese  warship  sent  abroad. 
But  he  will  be  remembered  chiefly  for  his  valuable  services 
at  the  time  of  the  Restoration,  when  he  was  chief  councillor 
to  the  Shogim  Keiki.  For  it  was 
mainly  owing  to  his  advice  that  the 
Shogun  quietly  resigned,  and  thus 
averted  civil  war.  After  the  Resto-  J^S^J^^^^^^'l* 
ration,  Katsu  was  Minister  of  the 
Navy  for  a  short  time;  and  was 
afterwards  made  a  count  and  a  mem- 
ber of  the  Privy  Council.  He  cared  little  for  fame  or  wealth, 
however,  and  spent  the  last  years  of  his  life  very  quietly  in 
Tokyo.     He  died  in  1899,  at  the  age  of  seventy-foui*. 



Enomoto  Buy 5,  born  in  1836,  was  tlie  first  Japanese  to  study 
naval  science  abroad.  He  went  to  Nagasaki  when  young  and 
learned  the  arts  of  navigation  and  engineering  under  a  Dutch 
teacher;  and  afterwards  went  to  Holland  for  fui'ther  study. 
He  remained  there  for  six  years,  until  he  became  a  proficient 
naval  officer. 

On  his  return  to  Japan  in  1866,  he  was  appointed  chief 
commissioner  of  the  Shogun's  navy.  Bat  soon  after  this,  the 
Shogimate  was  abolished,  when  the  Shogun  Keiki  peacefully 
retired  from  his  office.  There  were  many,  however,  who  did 
not  at  all  approve  of  this  mild  step ;  and  rebellion  against  the 
imperial  forces  arose  both  on  land  and  sea.  Enomoto  was  the 
leader  of  the  naval  revolters. 

The  naval  force  in  the  service  of  the  Shogun  consisted  of 
eight  ships,  mounting  eighty-tln:ee  guns.  And  Enomoto,  tak- 
ing these  ships  from  Yedo  Bay  in  the  night-time,  sailed  north- 
ward. The  imperial  fleet  soon  followed,  and  a  sea-fight  took 
place  at  Hakodate,  with  heavy  casualties  on  both  sides. 
Finally,  Enomoto,  having  lost  all  of  his  eight  ships,  offered  to 
give  himself  up,  in  order  that  his  followers  might  be  saved. 
This  offer  was  accepted,  and  he  was  sent  to  Yedo  as  a  captive  ; 
but  his  gallant  conduct  and   devotion   to  his  chief    were    so 

keenly  appreciated   that 
-^^>?>^-'       he  was  not  only  pardon- 
;^g5g^^^       ed,  but  was  appointed  a 
H%-"  high  official  in  the  new 

government.    In  1874  he 
was   given   the   rank  of 

^ __  vice-admiral,  and  sent  as 

^~^         ~      '  an   envoy   to  Russia   to 

settle  a  frontier  question.  He  was  afterwards  made  a  viscount, 
and  did  great  service  as  Minister  of  the  Navy,  and  also  as 
Minister  of  Agriculture  and  Commerce,  etc.,  etc.  He  died  in 
1909  at  the  age  of  seventy-tliree. 


PRINCE  YAMAGATA        (see  page  189). 



rebellion  broke  out  (in  1877),  lie  was  already  ^jlf^t-y^h 

advanced  to  the  rank  of   lieutenant-general,      -^ 

and  served  as  Chief-of-Staff  to  Prince  Arisuga- 

wa.     Next  lie   was    in    succession :     Home    Minister,    Prime 

Minister,  and  Chief  of  the  General  Staff,  and  was  promoted  to 

the  rank  of  full  general.     In  the  Japan  and  China  war  (1894-5) 

he  played  a  most  important  part,  and  became  known  throughout 

the  world  as  a  great  military  leader. 

When  the  Russo-Japanese  war  came,  he  was  too  old  to 
engage  in  active  service  at  the  front ;  but  when  Marquis  Oyama 
became  leader  of  the  Manchurian  Army,  Prince  Yamagata  took 
liis  place  as  Chief  of  the  General  Staff.  At  present  he  is 
President  of  the  Privy  Council,  and  the  most  influential  states- 
man in  Japan. 

In  character  Prince  Yamagata  is  a  curious  contrast  to  the  late 
Prince  Ito.  For  he  is  reserved,  silent,  and  very  rigorous  in 
liabits ;  while  Prince  Ito  was  frank,  eloquent,  and  far  from 
rigorous  in  either  liabits  or  manner.  The  career  of  Prince 
Yamagata  as  a  public  man  extends  over  half  a  century,  and  his 
distinguished  services  have  won  him  the  respect  and  gratitude 
of  the  nation. 


Prince  Yamagata  may  be  called  the  father  of  the  modern 
Japanese  Army  ;  and  like  a  parent  he  has  watched  and  tended 
its  growth  from  infancy  to  full  and  vigorous  manhood.  He  was 
early  known  as  a  good  fighter,  and  at  the  time 

of  the  Restoration  he  did  useful  service  for  the  '^    "^  ^ 

cause   of   his   country.      When   the   Satsuma  Wfj  wi^ 



Count  Okuma  was  born  in  1838,  in  the  province  of  Hizen. 
In  his  youth  he  studied  the  Dutch  language  in  Nagasaki  and 
thus  acquired  some  knowledge  of  foreign  affairs.  At  the  time 
of  the  Restoration,  this  knowledge  proved  very  useful,  and 
Okuma  was  given  a  high  position  in  the  new  government.  His 
promotion  was  very  rapid,  and  he  was  appointed  a  State 
Councillor  in  1870,  when  he  was  only  thirty-three  years  old. 
His  influence  became  greatest  after  the  death  of  Okubo  in  1878, 
and  for  a  time  he  was  considered  the  backbone  of  the  govern- 
ment. But  two  years  later  he  was  obliged  to  withdraw  from 
office,  on  account  of  difference  of  opinion  with  Prince  Ito  and 
others.  He  then  organized  a  political  party  called  the  KaisJiin- 
tb,  and  vigorously  opposed  the  government.  He  once  became 
Prime  Minister  and  also  Minister  of  Finance,  and  Minister  of 
Foreign  Affairs.  It  was  when  Minister  of  Foreign  Affairs  that 
he  lost  his  leg  by  the  explosion  of  a  dynamite  bomb  thrown  at 
his  carriage  by  a  man  named  Kurushima. 

Count  Okuma  is  vigorous  both  in  mind  and  body,  and  takes  a 

deep  interest  in  all  human  prob- 
lems. His  beautiful  residence 
at  Waseda  in  Tokyo  is  visited 
by  people  from  all  parts  of  the 
world,  and  his  opinions  on 
various  subjects  are  much 

Besides  being  a  statesman,. 
Count  Okuma  is  also  an  educationist  and  a  historian.  The 
Waseda  College  which  he  founded  is  now  the  largest  private 
university  in  Japan,  and  turns  out  several  hundred  graduates 
every  year. 


ADMIRAL  TOGO        (see  page  193). 



The  world  well  knows  about  the  victories  of  Admiral  Togo  in 
the  Russo-Japanese  war :  how  he  fought  and  won  against  an 
enemy  almost  double  in  strength,  and  how  in  the  last  great 
fight   he    practically    annihilated 
the  attacking  fleet.     It  is  not  so 
well  known,  however,  what  he  had 
done  before  this  fateful  time. 

Admiral  Togo  was  born  in  Sa- 
tsuma,  the  Sparta  of  Japan ;  and 
entered  the  Navy  when  quite 
young.  Soon  afterwards  he  went 
to  England  where  he  remained  for 

many  years  studying  naval  sciences.  When  the  China-Japan 
war  broke  out,  he  was  captain  of  the  cruiser  Naniiua^  and 
fought  in  the  first  naval  battle.  It  is  from  this  time  that  the 
name  of  Togo  Heihachiro  became  widely  known ;  for  it  was  he 
who  sank  the  Koshin,  flying  the  British  flag,  with  twelve  hund- 
red Chinese  soldiers  on  board.  He  did  his  best  to  bring  the 
Chinese  officers  to  reason  ;  and  fired  on  the  ship  only  as  a  last 
resort,  when  nothing  else  could  be  done.  His  action  at  that 
time  caused  much  hostile  criticism  of  Japan ;  but  that  Togo  was 
clearly  justified  in  taking  this  com*se  was  universally  admitted 
in  the  end.  In  fact,  his  calmly  resolute  conduct  on  this  occasion 
won  the  admiration  of  all. 

Few  men  in  Japan  are  more  loved  and  respected  than 
Admiral  Togo.  He  is  always  modest  in  bearing,  and  not  given 
to  speaking  much.  In  fact,  he  is  a  man  of  deeds,  not  words. 
Ages  hence,  to  future  generations,  the  story  of  his  gallant  deeds 
will  be  told ;  and  the  name  of  the  great  Admiral  will  be  ever 
remembered  in  the  history  of  Dai  Nippon. 




Among  the  famous  military  men  of  Japan  now  living,  none 
is  more  highly  respected  than  General  Nogi,  the  ideal  Biislii 
and  the  world-famous  hero  of  Port  Arthur.  He  is  a  veteran 
who  has  passed  through  every  kind  of  war  trial,  and  has  fought 
in  many  battles.  At  the  time  of  the  Satsuma  rebellion  (in 
1877),  he  w^as  wounded  severely  in  the  leg  and  taken  to  a 
hospital ;  but  hearing  the  sound  of  the  guns,  he  stole  out  from 
the  hospital  in  the  night-time,  and  went  to  join  his  comrades. 
That's  the  kind  of  a  man  he  is. 

At  the  time  of  the  Japan  and  China  war,  he  was  a  major- 
general  and  took  part  in  the  capture  of  Port  Arthur.  This  is 
one  of  the  reasons  why  he  was  specially  appointed  ten  years 
later  to  command  the  Third  Army,  and  again  to  take  Port 
Arthur.  The  siege  of  this  great  fortress  lasted  for  about  six 
months,  and  tens  of  thousands  of  lives  were  lost. 

The  Russian  soldiers  fought  so  well,  and  the  forts  were  so 

strong,  that  the  reduction  of  Port  Arthur  was  a  most  difficult 

undertaking.      The    world   well   knows   how,    in   spite   of   all 

obstacles.  General  Nogi  faithfully  and  successfully  accomplished 

the   task   that   was   entrusted   to   him.     Great, 

^      '  however,  was  his  own  personal  loss,  for  both  of 

\  tmA  his  sons  were  killed  during  the  fighting,  and  he 

(^jflKglS        is  now  childless. 
Y\j'|li|^l  At   the  close  of  the  war  General  Nogi  was 

^\\l^-^         appointed   President   of   the   Peers'    School   in 

^^  Tokyo.     It  is  touching  to  think  of  him  in  his  old 

age, — a  childless  old  man,  with  fatherly  care  looking  after  the 

children  of  others !   And  ever  striving  to  render  noble  service, 

and  faithfully  to  fulfil  his  duty. 

dJbdJbc5b<5b<5b  dJb^SbcSbdJb  ^^<Sh 





General   Tani  was  commander  of  tlie  Kumamoto  garrison 
when  tlie  Satsuma  rebellion  broke  out,  in  1877.     And  when  the         W 
news  of  the  approach  of  Saigo  at  the  head  of  about  fifteen 
thousand  rebels  reached  Kumamoto,  ^ ' 

he  determined  that  the  castle  should  i^-  -ifSS^iz    ^^^^ 

never  be  taken.     He  burnt  down  the  ,^^-^^J^^  ^       \J 

houses  near  the   castle  that  might 
cover  the  enemy's  attack,  and  prepared  for  the  defence. 

The  number  of  men  under  General  Tani  was  only  two  thou- 
sand, but  they  were  very  well  trained  and  well  armed.  In  fact, 
his  officers  were  the  pick  of  the  army ;  for  they  included  such 
men  as  Lieutenant-Colonel  Kabayama,  Major  Oku,  and  Captain 
Kodama,  who  later  became  distinguished  heroes  in  the  wars 
with  China  and  Russia. 

Saigo  at  first  took  up  a  contemptuous  attitude ;  for  he  ex- 
pected to  take  the  castle  with  one  blow.  But  when  the  attack 
began,  he  soon  found  out  his  mistake  ;  for  the  garrison  fought 
so  stubbornly  and  so  well  that  his  own  Satsuma  men  at  last 
began  to  despair.  They  spent  fifty  days  in  this  vain  attempt 
to  capture  the  castle,  and  thus  gave  the  government  time  to 
organize  and  send  forward  troops.  In  fact,  the  main  cause  of 
Saigo's  ultimate  destruction  might  well  be  attributed  to  the 
firm  attitude  and  dauntless  courage  of  General  Tani  and  his 
men.  General  Tani — now  over  seventy  and  retired  from  the 
Army — still  has  a  seat  in  the  House  of  Peers,  where  his  power- 
ful and  scholarly  speeches  are  sometimes  heard. 



Admiral  Kabayama  is  particularly  noted  for  liis  cool-lieaded 
courage  and  strong  nerves.  When  the  Satsuma  rebellion  broke 
out,  in  1877,  he  was  Chief-of -Staff  to  General  Tani  of  the  Ku- 
matoto  garrison  which  for  over  fifty  days  withstood  the  siege  of 
an  overwhelming  force  of  rebels.  One  day  when  Kabayama 
and  his  brother  officers  were  taking  lunch,  a  shell  from  one  of 
the  enemy's  guns  pierced  the  wall  of  the  room,  and  exploded. 
Natm^ally  this  caused  considerable  confusion ;  and  some  of  the 
officers  rushed  out  of  the  room.  But  Kabayama  did  not  stir 
from  his  seat.  He  went  on  eating  his  meal  as  if  nothing  had 
happened ;  and  gazed  calmly  at  the  enemy  through  the  hole  in 
the  wall  made  by  the  shell. 

At  the  time  of  the  China  and  Japan  war,  he  was  Chief  of  the 
Naval  Staff;  and  when  the  combined  fleet  under  Admiral  Ito 
set  out  to  search  for  the  enemy's  fleet,  Kabayama  went  along 
on  board  an  unarmed  steamship  named  the  Saikyb  Maru.  Soon 
the  Japanese  fleet  met  the  enemy's  warships  in  the  China 
Sea,  and  naval  warfare  commenced  (on  the  17th  of  September, 
1894) ;   but    the   Saikyb   Maru  being  a   slow   ship,    was  left 

far  behind.     A  Chinese  torpedo- 
SJ7  boat,    taking   advantage  of   this, 

quickly   approached   and  fired   a 
Whitehead  torpedo  at  the  Saikyb 
O^T^^  ^^(^'^u  from  a  distance  of   about 

fifty  yards.  All  thought  that 
the  ship  was  doomed ;  but 
Admiral  Kabayama  calmly 
watched  the  approaching  torpedo 


as  if  it  were  nothing  but  a  fish  or  a  harmless  seal.  Fortunately 
the  torpedo  passed  under  the  ship,  and  no  harm  was  done. 
Admiral  Kabayama  is  now  about  seventy  years  old,  and  still 
enjoys  good  health. 




At  the  time  of  tlie  Restoration,  Marshal  Oyama,  then  a  Sa- 
murai of  Satsuma  Province,  had  already  distinguished  himself. 
And  since  then  he  has  been  connected  with  all  military  move- 
ments  in   Japan.      Shortly   after  the 
Restoration  he  went  to  Europe  to  study 
military  science,  and  on  his  return  he 
w^as  appointed  major-general.     At  the 

time  of  the  Satsuma  rebellion  he  com-      \Vn  ^\\  )*Wj!}  ^^^ 
manded  a  brigade,  and  his  com^age  and 
remarkable  skill  became  more  and  more 

widely  recognized.  In  1880  he  was  appointed  Chief  of  the 
General  Staff,  and  three  years  later  he  became  Minister  of  War. 
When  the  China  and  Japan  w^ar  broke  out  he  was  already 
advanced  to  the  rank  of  full  general ;  and  as  commander  of  the 
Second  Army,  he  captured  Port  Arthur. 

Ten  years  later,  when  the  Russo-Japanese  war  broke  out,  he 
again  did  great  service  as  Commander-in-Chief  of  the  Manchu- 
rian  armies ;  and  the  name  of  Marshal  Oyama  became  known 
tlu'oughout  the  world.     He  was  made  a  prince  after  the  war. 

Prince  Oyama  is  very  broad-minded  and  amiable  in  disposi- 
tion ;  and  his  beaming  smile  and  ready  wit  never  fail  him.  He 
is  perfectly  calm  in  all  emergencies,  and  is  beloved  by  all  who 
serve  under  liim.  In  fact,  his  is  just  the  right  kind  of  character 
for  a  man  in  his  jDOsition.  He  is  now  seventy  years  old,  but  is 
still  very  robust  in  health.  His  wife.  Princess  Oyama,  was  one 
of  the  first  Japanese  ladies  educated  in  America. 



General  Kodama's  career  was  a  brilliant  one  from  the  outset. 
When  he  was  a  young  lieutenant  serving  in  the  Kumamoto 
garrison  (in  1876),  a  band  of  political  malcontents  rose  in  revolt 
there,  and  kiUed  General  Taneda  and  many  other  officers ;  so 
that  the  Tokyo  government  felt  very  uneasy,  fearing  that  the 
Kumamoto  castle  might  be  taken  by  the  revolters.  But  Prince 
(then  Lieutenant-General)  Yamagata  calmly  remarked,  "  It 
seems  that  Kodama  is  safe ;  and  if  so,  we  needn't  be  anxious 
about  the  garrison." 

In  the  following  year,  when  the  Satsuma  rebellion  broke  out 
and  a  large  army  sent  by  Saigo  Takamori  besieged  the  Kuma- 
moto garrison,  Kodama  was  still  in  service  there  on  the  staff  of 
General  Tani ;  and  greatly  distinguished  himself  during  the 
siege  which  lasted  for  more  than  fifty  days. 

His  remarkable  ability  being  now  fully  recognized,  his 
promotion  was  rapid,  and  he  always  occupied  posts  of  honour. 
During  the  ten  years  in  which  he  was  Governor-General  of 
Formosa  he  showed  great  administrative  talent,  and  the  rapid 
development  of  Formosa  was  largely  due  to  his  wise  manage- 
ment. But  he  was  called  away  from  this  post  when  the  Busso- 
Japanese  war  broke  out,  to  play  an  important  part  as  Chief-of- 
Staff  of  the  Manchurian  Army.  During 
the  war  he  was  promoted  to  the  rank  of 
full  general ;  and  at  the  close  of  the  war 
he  took  the  place  of  Prince  Oyama  as 
Chief  of  the  General  Staff.  He  died 
suddenly  of  congestion  of  the  brain  in 
1906.  General  Kodama  was  only  five  feet  in  height ;  but  ex- 
tremely active  both  in  mind  and  body,  and  of  a  very  cheerful 
and  amiable  disposition. 





Tlie  late  Marquis  SaigO,  yomi[rer  brother  of  tlie  famous 
Saigo  Takamori,  was  also  a  remarkable  man  in  liis  way. 
At  ordinary  times  lie  seemed  rather  commonplace ;  but  when 
anything  important  happened,  his 
rare  capacity  revealed  itself.  He 
had  always  a  pleasing  way  with  him, 
and  was  a  refreshing  humourist,  not 
avei'se  to  a  practical  joke  now  and 
then.  When  others  were  dejected 
he  was  merry ;  and  when  others  were 
quarrelling  he  would  be  joking,  and 
his  good  humour  usually  had  the 
effect  of  clearing  the  air. 

Once  wiien  he  was  Minister  for  Home  Affairs,  a  local  governor 
named  Kitagaki  came  and  made  a  complaint  against  some 
measure  taken  by  the  Home  Office  officials ;  and  argued  his 
point  so  hotly  and  with  so  much  reason  that  his  hearers  were 
much  embarrassed.  Just  then  Marquis  Saigo  entered  the 
room  with  a  cigar  in  his  mouth.  He  took  in  the  situation  at 
a  glance;  and  quietly  approaching  the  angry  and  blustering 
governor  from  behind,  he  applied  the  hot  end  of  the  cigar  to 
his  neck.  The  governor  gave  a  sudden  jump  as  if  he  had 
been  shot;  and  the  startled  expression  on  his  face  was  so 
irresistibly  funny,  that  Saigo  and  the  others  roared  with 
laughter.  And  then  the  governor  also,  in  spite  of  himself,  was 
compelled  to  laugh.  So  after  that  the  talk  became  more 
peaceful,  and  all  went  well. 



At  an  early  stage  in  tlie  Russo-Japanese  war  three  attempts 
were  made  by  tlie  Japanese  Navy  to  l)lock  tlie  entrance  to 
Port  Arthur.  A  number  of  picked  men  lost  tlieir  lives  in  these 
attempts  ;  but  their  daring  deeds  had  a  very  good  moral  effect. 
Especially  admirable  was  the  heroic  action  of  Commander 

He  was  then  senior  torpedo  officer  of  the  battleship  AsaJd 
and  w^as  chosen  to  command  one  of  the  first  blockading  ships. 
On  this  first  occasion  he  returned  safely;  but  as  the  result 
was  not  quite  satisfactory,  he  tried  a  second  time.  This  time 
his  blockading  ship  was  placed  in  the  desired  position,  but 
when  they  lowered  a  boat  to  leave  the  ship.  Commander  Hirose 
noticed  that  the  chief  w^arrant  officer  called  Sugino  was  not 
there.  He  at  once  w^ent  back  and  searched  everywhere  for  the 
missing  man.  But  he  could  not  find  him,  so  at 
last  he  had  to  give  it  up  and  get  into  the  small 
boat.  Just  as  the  boat  was  pushing  off,  a  shell 
suddenly  struck  Commander  Hirose  and  he  was 
blown  to  pieces ;  nothing  remaining  but  his  blood- 
stained cap. 

At   Banseibashi    in    Tokyo    there    is   a   bronze 
statue  of  Hirose ;  and  under  him  another  figure  is 
shown  with   a   hatchet  in  his   hand.      This  figure 
fg  represents  Cliief  Warrant  Officer  Sugino  for  whom 

1^  the  brave  Hirose  gave  his  life. 





Fukuzawa  is  regarded  as  the  greatest  educationist  of  the 
Meiji  era.  He  was  born  in  Bungo  Province  (in  1834),  and 
when  quite  young  went  to  Nagasaki  where  he  studied  Dutch 
with  so  much  success  that  he  after- 
wards taught  this  language  for  a 
time.  But  he  soon  came  to  see  that 
Enghsh  was  more  important ;  and  in 
spite  of  many  obstacles,  he  was  able 
to  acquire  a  knowledge  of  this  lan- 
guage also. 

At  that  time  several  embassies  were  sent  abroad  by  the 
Tokugawa  government,  and  Fukuzawa  managed  to  go  along 
as  one  of  the  attendants.  So  in  this  way  he  was  able  to  visit 
America  twice  and  Europe  once.  And  as  no  one  at  that  time 
had  such  opportunities  for  seeing  foreign  customs,  the  in- 
formation collected  and  published  in  book  form  by  Fukuzawa 
was  very  widely  read  and  much  appreciated  by  the  nation. 

When  he  at  last  returned  from  his  travels  abroad,  he  at 
once  founded  a  school  called  the  Keio  Gijuku  at  Sliiba  in 
Tokyo,  and  there  taught  English  and  other  useful  things. 
He  stood  quite  apart  from  the  tumult  of  the  Kestoration,  and 
it  is  a  w^ell- known  fact  that  on  tlie  verj^  day  when  a  bloody 
battle  was  fought  at  Uyeno  Park  between  the  retainers  of  the 
Shogun  and  the  Imperial  Army,  he  calmly  attended  his  school 
and  gave  his  lecture  as  usual.  This  school,  the  Keio  Gijuku, 
is  now  almost  the  largest  school  in  Japan,  and  many  well- 
known  men  have  been  educated  there. 

In  addition  to  this  educational  work,  Fukuzawa  founded  the 
Jiji-Shhnpb,  now  the  leading  newspaper  in  Japan.  He  died  in 
1901,  at  the  age  of  sixty-eight. 



Tlie  name  of  NakamiTra  Seiclioku  will  be  long  and  gratefully 
remembered  as  that  of  a  scholar  who  appeared  in  the  early 
part  of  the  Meiji  era.  He  was  born  in  Yedo,  in  1832,  and 
when  yomig  studied  the  Chinese  classics  with  such  diligence 
that  at  the  age  of  thirty  he  was  appointed  lecturer  to  the 

Meanwhile  he  had  taken  up  the  study  of  foreign  languages,, 
and  in  1866  he  was  sent  to  England  where  he  stayed  for  two 
years.  On  his  return  home,  he  set  about  the  translation  of 
Smiles'  Self  Help  into  Japanese ;  and  the  contents  of  this- 
boolv  were  so  interesting,  and  the  translation  so  good,  that  it 
was  read  enthusiastically  by  all,  and  an  immense  number  of 
copies  were  sold.  In  fact,  no  other  translation  that  has 
appeared  in  the  Meiji  era  has  had  such  a  far-reaching  influence 
as  this. 

In  the  sixth  year  of  Meiji  (1873),  Nakamura  founded  a 
X)riYate  school  at  Koishikawa  in  Tokyo,  and  many  prominent 
men  in  Japan  are  graduates  of  this  school.  For  many  years 
it  w^as  considered  the  rival  of  the  Keio  college  founded  by 
Fukuzawa;  but  it  was  finally  closed  when  Nakamura  was 
appointed  a  professor  in  the  Imperial  University. 

He  was  made  a  member  of  the  House  of  Peers  in  189(1, 
and  in  the  same  year  was  appointed  president  of  the  Higher 
Normal  School,  in  addition  to  his  ^professorship  in  the  Univer- 
sity.    But  in  the  following  year  he  died  at  the  age  of  sixty. 

t-i^^(^^  \^^%^^^  t^^i^'Wft; 


'  ^ 



^■^  *^~i^^ 



Zen  or  Zen-na  is  a  Cliinese  renderiDg  of  tlie  Sanscrit  worJ 
Dhydna  (lit  "  contemx:)lation  " j.  At  its  best  it  is  said  to  be  a 
system  of  dee^)  meditation  by  means  of  which  interior  en- 
lightenment or  contemplation  of  truth — culminating  in  Samd- 
dhi — may  be  attained.  At  its  worst,  and  in  its  degenerated 
form,  it  is  apt  to  be  merely  a  kind  of 
self -hypnotism.  Many  people  famous 
in  Japanese  history  have  practised 
Zen;  and  it  has  had  much  influence 
on  the  national  culture.  It  is  at 
present  the  best  form  of  Buddhism 
in  Japan ;  and  is  still  x^ractised  and 
esteemed  by  many  highly   educated 

people.  At  Kamakura,  where  one  of  the  principal  Zen  temples 
called  Engaku-ji  is  situated,  e\'en  young  men — students  of  the 
universities,  and  others— may  frequently  be  found  sitting  for 
days  at  a  time  seeking  tlie  solution  of  the  puzzling  questions 
set  them  by  their  Zen  teachers. 

This  system  came  to  Japan  from  China,  where  it  was 
introduced  from  India  in  A.D.  5*20  by  an  Indian  mystic 
named  Bodhidharma — better  known  as  Daruma  (see  page  28) 
whose  odd  figure  is  known  to  every  child  in  Japan.  In  1 192 
the  famous  priest  Eisai  founded  the  first  Zen  school  (called 
R'lnzai-sliu)  in  Japan.  And  in  1227  Dogen  founded  the 
Sudo-sM.  The  third  branch  called  the  ObaJcit-sJm,  was  brought 
from  China  by  a  priest  named  Ingen  in  1665.  Eisai  is  also 
credited  with  introducing  the  tea  plant  into  Japan.  Other 
well  known  Zen  x)riests  are  Hakuin,  Gazan,  Genkei,  and  Gesshii. 
Hojo  Tokimune,  who  resisted  the  demands  of  Kublai  Khan, 
was  also  a  votary  of  Zen.  There  are  at  present  20,420  Zen 
temples  in  Japan. 



Apropos  of  ascetics  (see  page  30),  it  is  necessarj'  to  add  some- 
tliing  about  the  occult  arts  of  old  Japan.  The  word  Sen-jutsu 
(>f[l]^i|Lf)  seems  to  have  been  used  for  a  superior  form  of  magic ; 
while  the  word  Majutsii  (J8#x)j  from  its  etymology  of  ma  (/g) 
a  demon  and  j\itsu  (^j|^)  art,  was  used  for  a  lower  form.  Among 
the  various  occult  practices  may  be  mentioned  Kami-orosln,  a 
kind  of  mediumship,  supposed  to  be  possession  by  a  god  or 
superior  spirit.  Kuchi-yose,  a  lower  form  of  the  latter,  is  a 
kind  of  necromancy  practised  mainly  by  old  women,  called 
icJdko  (witches).  This  was  forbidden  by  law,  but  is  still 
practised  secretly  to  some  extent.  Kohkuri  is  a  kind  of  table- 
turning.  Eld  is  a  form  of  divination,  and  akin  to  Uranai, 
fortune-telling  by  palmistry  or  astrology.  Sldnobi-jnthu  is  the 
art  of  becoming  invisible.  Ki-ai  is  a  kind  of  shout  issuing 
from  the  abdomen  to  cast  a  spell  over  a  person  or  animal. 
There  are  also  various  forms  of  exorcism  practised  mainly  by 
priests  in  cases  of  obsession,  which,  by  the  way,  is  usually 
attributed  to  foxes  or  badgers. 

These  various  practices  have  fallen  into  disrepute,  owing  to 
the  abuses  they  gave  rise  to.     At  present  they   are  confined 
mainly   to  ignorant  persons,    and   are   usually   disbelieved   in 
altogether   by    men    of   modern    education.     Of 
late    years,    however,    the    subject    of    psychic 
phenomena  has  attracted  the  attention  of  a  small 
group  of  scholars,  notably  Prof.  Fukurai  of  the 
Imperial  University  and  Prof.  Imamura  of  the 
Kyoto  University;  and  experiments  of   various 
kinds  are  described  in  two  or  three  books  that 
have  appeared  on  the  subject.     Clairvoyance  has 
also     attracted      considerable    attention    lately, 
owing  to  the  appearance  of  two  ladies  believed 
(^^^0^         to  possess  this  faculty.      In  Bakin's  works  con- 
siderable mention  is  made  of  various  occult  arts. 


By  permission  of  the  Gaho-sha 


Kano  Hogai's  masterpiece.        (see  page  215). 



For  about  teu  years  after  tlie  Restoration,  the  Japanese 
nation  was  so  overwlielmed  with  the  changes  caused  by  con- 
tact with  western  civilization  that  Japanese  art  was  c^uite 
neglected,  and  works  of  art  in  jnu-e  Japanese  style  were  treated 
as  if  they  were  almost  worthless. 
For  example,  pictures  by  the 
famous  Sesshu  (see  jmge  105), 
now  worth  ten  thousand  yen, 
were  then  sold  for  only  six  or 
seven  yen. 

The  revival  of  Japanese  paint- 
ing and  its  .appreciation  were 
mainly  due  to  the  efforts  of  the 
late  Ernest  Fenellosa,  a  professor 
at  the  Imperial  Univei*sity  in 
Tok^o,  who  came  to  Japan  in 
1879.  He  was  struck  by  the 
beauty  oi  Japanese  painting, 
and  devoted  himself  to  its  investigation  and  preservation. 
This  led  to  the  opening  of  an  art  exhibition  in  1882,  and  the 
establishment  of  the  present  Art  School  in  188S ;  and  these 
two  events  were  the  harbingers  of  the  revival. 

Among  the  thousands  of  painters  who  have  appeared  since 
then,  probably  the  greatest  was  Kano  H(3gai.  His  pictm*es 
soon  attracted  the  attention  of  Prof.  Fenellosa,  and  he  rapidl}' 
became  famous.  His  greatest  masterpiece  is  a  i)icture  of 
Kwannon,  now  preserved  in  the  Tokyo  Art  ScIkkjI.  He  died 
in  1888.  Hashimoto  Gaho,  who  died  in  1908,  was  almost 
equally  great.  He  taught  painting  in  the  Art  School  for 
many  years.  Among  the  famous  jiainters  now  living  may  be 
mentioned  the  names  of  Gyokusho,  Kampo,  Kogyo,  Kwan- 
zan,  Fuko,  Shoen,  Gvokudo,  Keinen,  and  GekkO. 




Nowadays  every  sclioolboy  in  Japan  lias  some   knowledge 

of  English,  and  foreign  books  of  every  kind  are  accessible  to 

all.     But  tilings  w^ere  very  different  in  tlie  early  days  of  tlie 

Restoration.     In   tliose  days  the   various 

clans   were    eager   to   engage    men   with 

a  knowledge  of  foreign  languages.     The 

lord  of  Satsuma  especially  was  eager  to 

find  some  one  with  a  good  knowledge  of  English,  and  at  last 

he  was  fortunate  enough  to  engage  Maejima  Mitsu  who  was 

one  of  the  best  linguists  at  that  time. 

Now,    this   lord   had   a    certain   treasure   which   he    valued 

very  much,  and  he  promised  to  show  it  to  Maejima,  though 
it  was  very  seldom  sliow^n  to  any  one.  When 
the  time  came  to  look  at  the  treasure,  Maejima 
carefully  purified  himself,  and  putting  on  his 
best  clothes  went  to  the  lord's  palace  to  view 
the  precious  article.  After  making  several 
I30WS,  he  began  respectfully  to  take  off  the 
covering  of  the  treasure.  Inside  he  found  a 
beautiful  lacquered  box,  and  inside  of  this 
again,  wrapped  in  brocade,  was  the  treasure. 
With  trembling  hands  he  removed  the  cloth, 
and  lo !  there  was  exposed  to  his  astonished 
gaze  a  copy  of  Webster's  Unabridged  Dic- 
tionary ! 


HITACHI  YAM  A,  THE  CHAMPION        (see  page  220). 



Tlie  Japanese  national  sport  of  Sumo,  or  wrestling,  dates  from 
yerj  ancient  times.  Tlie  fii-st  wrestling  match  mentioned  in 
history  was  held  in  the  imperial  palace  diu-ing  the  reign  of  the 
Emperor  Sninin  (said  to  be  in  93  B. 


In  this  historic  contest,  the  famous 
Xomi  no  Snknne  beat  the  redoubta- 
ble champion  named  Taima  no  Ke- 

During  the  Emperor  Kammu's 
reign  (782 — 806),  an  annual  festival  called  the  Sumd-secMe  fii-st 
began  to  be  held  in  the  palace,  where  officers  of  the  Com*t  were 
ordered  to  show  their  skill  in  wrestling  before  the  Emperor  and 
nobles.     This  festival  was  continued  for  many  centuries. 

The  public  exhibition  of  wrestling  by  professionals  dates  from 
the  Ashikaga  age  ;  but  it  was  from  the  latter  part  of  the  eight- 
eenth century  that  wrestling  became  very  popular  among  the 
citizens  of  Yedo.  The  Avrestling  ring  was  then,  as  it  is  at 
present,  in  the  grounds  of  a  Buddhist  temple  called  Eko-in, 
situated  in  what  is  now  the  Honjo  district  of  Tokyo.  And  it  is 
here  that  the  great  wrestling  matches  are  still  held  twice  a 
year,  usually  in  January  and  May. 

The  wrestlers  are  divided  into  two  parties  called  the  East  and 
the  West,  and  the  champion  on  each  side  is  styled  YoJcomna. 
At  the  wrestling  matches  now  held  in  a  large  round  building, 
there  is  great  excitement  wlien  two  champions  meet,  and  hats 
and  coats  are  freely  flung  into  the  ring  by  enthusiastic 




Tlie  cliampiou  wrestler  is  called  Yolvziina,  and  at  present 
tliere  are  two  cliampions  wlio  hold  tliis  coveted  title :  one  is 
named  Hitacliiyama  (lit.  "  Mount  Hitachi "},  and  the  other 
Umegatani  (lit.  "  Plum  Valley  "). 

Hitacliiyama  is  considered  to  be  one  of  the  strongest  w^res- 
tlers  that  have  ever  appeared  in  Japan.  He  is  the  son  of  a 
Samnrai,  and  was  born  in  the  city  of  Mito  in  the  sixth  year  of 
the  present  Meiji  era.  As  a  boy  he  attended  a  primary  school 
and  afterwards  a  middle  school ;  but  owing  to  his  gi'eat  and 
increasing  strength,  he  finally  gave  up  study  and  became  a 
wrestler  when  about  twenty  years  old.  Ten  years  later  he  got 
the  ('hampionship,  and  for  several  3^ears  he  was  w^ithout  a  rival 

in  skill  and  strength. 

About  three  years  ago  he  went 
on  a  tour  to  America  and  Em-ope, 
and  gave  an  exhibition  of  wrestling 
before  the  President  of  the  United 
States.  He  is  now  about  forty 
years  old,  and  will  prolmbly  retire 
before  long,  as  it  is  customary  for  wrestlers  to  do  so  and 
become  what  is  called  Toshiyori  (lit.  "  elder  "),  at  about  this 
age.  It  may  be  added  that  Hitacliiyama  is  five  feet  ten  inches 
in  height,  and  weighs  about  three  hundred  and  forty  pounds. 



the  founder  of  the  new  school 

Tlie  origin  of  Japanese  Jujutsu  is  not 
clear,  but  it  seems  to  be  comparatively 
moclern.       According     to     tradition,     a 
Cliinaman  named  Cliin,  who  came  to  Japan 
in  1659,  first  tauglit  tliis  art  to  three  Samurai ; 
hut  it  was  yery  primitiye  and  differed  a  good 
deal  from  the  Jujutsu  of  to-day.     The  first  man  to 
become  famous  in  this  art  was  Yoshiokn,  Kempo  who 
liyed  in  the  latter  half  of  the  seyenteenth  centmy,  and 
the  story  of  his  curious  contest  with  a  skilful  fencer  named 
Miyamoto  Musashi  is  well  known. 

Dui"ing  the  Tokugawa  era,  many  specialists  in  Jvjutsu  appear- 
ed, and  gradually  divided  into  many  different  schools.  But  it 
was  not  until  the  present  Meiji  era  that  the  strong  points  of 
these  schools  wei-e  combined  into  a  ncAv  and  better  sj^stem  now 
called  Judo.  This  w^as  accomplished,  after  careful  study  and 
selection,  by  Mr.  Kano  Jigoro,  president  of  the  T6k3'6  Higher 
Normal  School.  The  training  schcx)l  established  by  Mr.  Kano 
is  called  the  Kodokan,  and  thousands  of  young  men  learn  Judo 
in  this  famous  school.  In  all  parts  of  Japan  Judo  is  now  taught 
by  men  from  the  Kodokan.  A  number  of  foreigners  also, 
including  naval  and  military  officers,  have  learned  something  of 
the  art  in  this  school. 




Both  No  and  Kijbgen  were  dramas  exclusively  for  tlie  upper 
classes.  But  people  of  the  middle  and  lower  classes  also  need- 
ed some  such  entertainment :  so  to  meet  this  demand  there 
appeared — towards  the  end  of  the  sixteenth  century— two  kinds 
of  theatrical  performance  called  Joruri  and  Kahiiki.  The 
former  is  a  kind  of  puppet  show  accompanied  with  ballad  sing- 
ing ;  and  reached  its  highest  development  in  Osaka,  with  Chi- 
kamatsu  as  the  principal  playwright.  Even  now  the  Joruri  is 
played  there  all  the  3^ear  round,  in  a  famous  theatre  called  the 
"  Bunrakuza." 

But  the  theatrical  performance  proper  was  the  Kahulci.  This 
was  founded  by  a  woman  named  0-kuni,  who  formed  a  company 
of  female  players  in  Kyoto.  They  soon  became  very  popular, 
and  are  said  to  have  played  before  such  great  personages  as 
Nobunaga  and  Hideyoshi.  But  after  a  few  years,  the  authorit- 
ies, considering  it  injurious  to  public  morals,  forbade  women  to 
appear  on  the  stage,  so  their  place  was  taken  by  men  who  acted 
as  female  impersonators.  Fortunately  women  players  have 
now  appeared  again,  and  a  school  for  actresses  has  been  lately 
formed  in  connection  with  the  fine,  new  Imperial  Theatre. 

Since  the  beginning  of  the  present  Meiji  era,  the  Kahuld  has 
become  more  and  more  popvilar  with  all  classes ;  and  the  tone 
of  the  theatre  as  well  as  the  social  position  of  actors  has 
steadily  improved.  During  the  earlier  period  of  KcibiiJd  the 
two  greatest  actors  were  Tojuro  and  Danjiu-6  (the  first) ;  and  in 
recent  times  the  greatest  were  Danjuro  (the  ninth)  and  Kikugo- 
ro  (the  fifth).  Danjuro  (see  p)age  225)  especially  was  quite 
unique,  and  might  be  called  the  Irving  of  Japan.  The  Kabuki 
drama  is  now  commonly  designated  Kyu-ha,  or  old  school,  to 
distinguish  it  from  the  Shim-pa,  or  new  realistic  school,  which 
sprang  up  about  twenty  years  ago. 


Bypertnission  of  Mr. 


Playing  the  part  of  Benkei.        (see  page  67) 



These  gods,  symbolizing  certain  virtues,  are  mostly  of  Indian 
origin  ;  but  they  have  become  quite  naturalized  in  Japan,  and         j^ 
are  so  closely  commingled  with  the  everyday  life  of  the  nation 
that  they  are  constantly  referred  to 
even    by    children.      Innumerable 
pictures  of  them  and  images  may 
be  found  everywhere  in  Japan. 

Jurojin  is  the  god  of  long  life  (^. 
^),  and  keeps  a  book  in  which  the 
life  of  each  person  is  recorded.  He 
is  always  represented  holding  a  staff 

and  accompanied  by  a  crane  as  an  emblem  of  longevity,  and  a 

Daikoku,  the  god  of  wealth  (;^M{S)'  c^'^i'i'i^s  a  golden  mallet 
and  a  bag  of  treasures  ;  and  is  represented  sitting  on  straw  rice 
bags  which  rats  are  gnawing, 

Fukurokuju,  the  god  of  popularity  (AM)?  is  represented  as  an 
old  man  with  a  long  head  equal  to  his  body  in  length,  with  a 
long,  thick  beard  and  bright,  pleasant  eyes.  He  is  attended  by 
a  crane,  a  dear  or  a  tortoise. 

Yebisu,  the  god  of  integi'ity  (fpfjjtj,  is  a  stout,  jovial  old 
X^ersonage  with  a  winning  smile.  He  is  represented  holding  a 
fishing-rod,  with  a  large  sea-bream  which  he  has  caught. 

Bishamon,  the  god  of  dignity  (^;)fe),  is  represented  wearing 
armour,  and  trampling  on  two  devils.  In  his  right  hand  he 
holds  a  sacred  globe  containing  priceless  treasures  which  he 
gives  to  those  found  worthy. 

Hotel,  the  god  of  magnanimity  (^Cm^?  i^  shown  with  a  large 
forehead  and  an  enormous  abdomen.  He  carries  a  large  bag 
wdth  a  staff,  and  never  loses  his  temper,  however  he  may  be 

Benten,  the  goddess  of  amiability  (^'gjc),  is  a  beautiful  woman 
often  represented  mounted  on  a  dragon.  She  wears  a  coronet 
in  which  there  is  a  white  serpent,  with  a  face  resembling  that 
of  a  venerable  old  man. 




A  certain  Japanese  uoblemau  had  a  sou  wlio  was  just  old 
euougli  to  become  a  soldier.  But  tlie  fatlier  did  uot  want  liis 
son  to  enter  tlie  Army,  so  lie  tried  all  means  to  prevent  it.  At 
last  he  thought  of  his  friend  Surgeon-General  Baron  Ishiguro 
who  was  at  that  time  head  of  the  medical  department.  He 
thought  that  perhaps  the  surgeon  would  use  his  influence  to 
enable  the  young  man  to  escape  military  service.  So  he  sent  his 
steward  to  the  Surgeon-General's  house  with  a  present  of  kaUu- 
ohuslti,  (dried  bonito),  and  told  him  to  say,  "  My  master  hoi)es 
that   you   w^ill   show   his   son    special   favour   in   the    medical 



When  Baron  Ishiguro  heard  this,  he  pretended  to  mistake  the 
meaning  of  what  the  steward  said  and 
replied,  "  Your  master  has  indeed  a 
^  g^  noble  mind.     As  you  know,  it  is  not 

I  but  the  examinins:  surgeon  who  ex- 


'S\^  >w     ^^N       amines  the  young  men  ;  but  I  will  do 

^¥^^|(^^SlV      ^I      iny  best  to  get  him  to  show  special 

^^  '       favour  to  your  master's  son.     And  I 

sincerely  hope  that  he  will  have  the 

honour   of   passing   the   examination,    and    thus    becoming    a 

defender  of  the  State,  as  your  patriotic  master  desires." 

The  steward  thanked  him  and  hurried  away  with  a  very  red 





In  tlie  second  year  of  Meiji,  Mr.  (now  Baron)  Sliibusawa,  tlie 
famous  financier,  went  abroad  in  tlie  suite  of  tlie  lord  of  Mito,  a 
brother  of  Prince  Keiki  Tokugawa,  the  last  of  the  Shoguns. 
Before  starting  he  went  to  a  tailor's  shop  in  Yoko- 
hama and  bought  a  ready-made  evening  dress  suit. 
He  was  very  much  pleased  with  the  style  of  it,  and 
said  to  his  friends  :  "I  think  this  kind  of  a  coat  is 
worn  l)y  Samurai  in  Western  countries,  for,  as  you 
see,  it  is  cut  away  in  front,  giving  room  for  the  swords." 

Well,  when  the  party  arrived  at  Hongkong,  they  put  up  at 
the  best  hotel ;  and  as  it  was  then  about  noon,  Mr.  Sliibusawa 
put  on  his  swallow-tail  ever,  he  found  that  the 

coat,  and  started  for  the  M)^  servants    of    the    hotel 

dining-room      to      take      /K\,  treated  him  without  any 

luncheon.  A  respect    whatever.       At 

To  his  surprise,  how-  last    he    called    one    of 

them  and  asked  why  he  was  treated  so  coolly,  while  the  other 
members  of  tlie  party  were  shown  so  much  respect. 

"  Why,  you're  only  a  waiter,  aren't  you  ? "  encjuired  the 
servant.  "  A  Avaiter  ?  "  cried  Mr.  Sliibusawa,  "  wliv, 
certainly  not,  what  made  3'ou  think  so?  " 

"  Well,  sir,"  replied  the  servant,  "  I  hope  j^ou'll 
excuse  ine,  but  it's  only  waiters  that  wear  evening 
dress  in  the  dav-time." 




m  Wlien  Minra  Goro  was  Commander-iu-Cliief  of  tlie  Hirosliima 

Garrison,  one  day  his  old  friend  Shirai  Kosnke  called  on  liim. 
j^         At  this  time  Goro  happened  to  be  out,  so  Kosnke  handed  a  box 
s^^         of  cake  to  the  servant  and  went  away.     When  Goro  came  back, 
"         the  servant  told  him  that  his  old  friend  had  called  during  his 
absence  and  left  as  a  present  a  box  of  cake.     When  Goro  heard 
this,  he  remarked  with  a  sigh,  "  Poor  Kosuke  !  He  must  have 
fallen  off  a  good  deal.     To  think  of  such  a  rowdy  as  lie  was 
coming  to  my  house  like  an  old  woman  with  a  present  of  cake  !  " 
About  a  month  afterwards,  however,  a  man  from  a  neighbour- 
ing cake  shop  came  to  Miura's  house  and  requested  payment 
for  a  box  of  cake.     The  servant  reported  this  to  his  master  and 
said,  "  It  is  the  cake  which  Mr.  Shirai  Kosuke  brought  when 
he  called  here  last  month.     It  seems  that  he  never  paid  for  it, 
bvit  told  them  in  the  cake  shop  to  send  the  bill  to  3^ou." 

"  Well,"  remarked  Goro  with  another  sigh,  "  I  was  mistaken 
about  Kosuke.     He  has  not  become  so  foolish  after  all." 

[the  end] 


M   \ 



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This  book  is  DUE  on  the  last  date  stamped  below. 

Wr  22  1947      . 





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MAR  2  0  1959 




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LD  21-100m-12,'46(A2012sl6)4120 

"^i  82003 
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